BP is trying to boost production of ‘blue’ hydrogen from natural gas and limit output of ‘green’ hydrogen from renewable energy. It is trying to do this using grossly inflated projections of future hydrogen use and thus claim there will not be enough renewable energy to sustain a global net zero economy. However green groups are fighting back against such efforts. BP’s Chief Economist Spencer Dale claims, in Petroleum Economist that ‘the production of blue hydrogen helps overall global supplies of hydrogen to grow relatively quickly without relying too heavily on renewable energy’. In reality BP’s push to convert its natural gas production into ‘blue’ hydrogen is likely to squeeze ‘green’ hydrogen out of a market that will be much smaller than what BP claims. In its just published ‘global energy outlook’ BP makes the dubious projection that (global) growth in hydrogen provision in buildings energy use will be faster than electricity use, as these sources replace fossil use. This is worrying and also unlikely since, as argued in other blog posts on this website, hydrogen is a very inefficient way of providing heating compared to electrically powered heat pumps. Three to four times less renewable energy is needed to provide a given amount of heating using heat pumps than using hydrogen.
100% Renewables 17th Sept 2020 read more »
Question: Was Aberdeen right to order a new fleet of hydrogen-powered double-decker buses – or was Coventry right to go electric instead? Answer: Trick question. They were both right. Congrats to both cities for taking an early lead in zero-emission transportation. And for creating new business and employment opportunities in the process. By contrast, the wrong answer would be to spend years arguing over perfect solutions, leaving British workers on the scrapheap and the UK lagging behind in the global energy transition. Right now, no-one knows definitively which technology option will turn out better. And by the time we do, both sets of buses will be a decade old and due for replacement, anyway.
Energy Voice 18th Sept 2020 read more »
Portable emissions-free “power plants” could soon hit the road under plans by Toyota to fit some of the company’s light-duty trucks with hydrogen fuel cells that can generate electricity. The world’s second-largest carmaker will begin testing the plan to fit a Toyota Dyna with hydrogen fuel cells in Japan later this month, a move that could create fleets of temporary, mobile electricity sources worldwide. The specially equipped vans could generate electricity for 72 hours straight and could potentially replace the diesel-fuelled mini generators that typically power outdoor sporting events, concerts and festivals with a zero-emissions alternative. They could also be used to provide emergency electricity to disaster-stricken areas left without power for up to three days before refuelling.
Guardian 17th Sept 2020 read more »