The International Energy Agency (IEA) has issued a new report looking at the role of hydrogen in the energy transition.
According to the report The Future of Hydrogen: Seizing Today’s Opportunities, driving an increase in the adoption of clean hydrogen is the strong support from governments and businesses in the form policies and an increase in investments.
The report states that by increasing reliance on hydrogen, the world will accelerate the transition to a more sustainable and secure energy future.
The sector has the potential to help the energy industry to address critical challenges including inadequate energy supply to meet growing demand during peak periods.
Hydrogen can help store the variable energy sourced from renewables such as solar to better match demand during peak periods or when generation is low.
Moreover, hydrogen can help decarbonise the transport, energy and industrial sectors, heavy emitters of carbon.
The study provides recommendations on how to scale-up hydrogen projects through bringing down the costs, building hydrogen infrastructure and spurring trade across a wide range of sectors.
The recommendations include:
- Making industrial ports the nerve centres for scaling up the use of clean hydrogen;
- Building on existing infrastructure, such as natural gas pipelines;
- Expanding the use of hydrogen in transport by using it to power cars, trucks and buses that run on key routes;
- Launching the hydrogen trade’s first international shipping routes.
Dr Fatih Birol, the IEA’s executive director, said: “Hydrogen is today enjoying unprecedented momentum, driven by governments that both import and export energy, as well as the renewables industry, electricity and gas utilities, automakers, oil and gas companies, major technology firms and big cities.
“The world should not miss this unique chance to make hydrogen an important part of our clean and secure energy future.”
The launch of the report comes at a time:
- More than 200 projects have started operation to convert electricity and water into hydrogen to reduce emissions over the past two decades
- There are currently around 11,200 hydrogen-powered cars on the road worldwide. Existing government targets call for that number to increase dramatically to 2.5 million by 2030.
The report was conducted in partnership with governments, industry and academic researchers.