Trade association RenewableUK has called on the government to support the rapid development of green hydrogen in the UK, in a new study. Renewable Hydrogen – Seizing the UK Opportunity says renewable electricity can be used to develop green hydrogen, which could play a key role in the UK’s energy sector as a cheap and clean power source. As such the government should publish a hydrogen strategy that includes a roadmap to 2050, detailing how it can be developed from a niche technology to a “central pillar” of the UK’s energy system. This should include how to deliver the first gigawatt of electrolyser capacity in the UK, identifying potential projects and funding.
Current 23rd Sept 2020 read more »
The UK government must publish a hydrogen strategy detailing how the fuel will evolve from a niche alternative to a central driver of the net zero transition, trade body RenewableUK has urged in a report published yesterday. Titled Renewable Hydrogen – Seizing the UK Opportunity, the report calls on the government to back the development of ‘green hydrogen’ – produced using renewable energy – by supporting the renewable sector as it attempts to replicate the success of the UK’s offshore wind industry.
Business Green 24th Sept 2020 read more »
Energy Voice 23rd Sept 2020 read more »
Boris Johnson is being misled by Britain’s multibillion-pound fossil fuel lobby into backing climate change policies that risk unnecessarily pushing up energy bills and undermining carbon targets, leading scientists warn today. Over the last year dozens of energy supply firms, including Shell and BP, have joined forces to push the government to commit to hydrogen as the key element of its target for the UK to be carbon neutral by 2050. More than 60 MPs and peers have endorsed the industry’s case while the government has appointed the head of Shell in the UK as co-chairman of its hydrogen advisory council. Mr Johnson is reported to believe that hydrogen can be at the forefront of the government’s “green revolution”, heating homes and powering transport. The campaign has led to warnings from independent energy experts that Downing Street is falling for “hype” and risks jeopardising the 2050 target while leaving consumers with a multibillion-pound bill to subsidise the changes. In a letter to The Times today David Cebon, professor of engineering at Cambridge University, said that hydrogen was far from a silver bullet. “Much scientific evidence shows that widespread adoption of hydrogen (instead of electricity) for heating and heavy vehicles would be detrimental to the UK’s economy, its energy security and its decarbonisation commitments,” he wrote. “Given that the fossil fuel industry’s preferred . . . solution would involve significantly increased natural gas consumption, it is not surprising that it is busy lobbying governments around the world for hydrogen.” The industry is urging the government to utilise the natural gas distribution network to supply “green” hydrogen fuel to homes and businesses. At the same time, they are lobbying for hydrogen to be a key component of the transport network, particularly for buses and long distance freight lorries where electric battery technology is not practical at present. Experts say, however, that creating truly green hydrogen fuel from water is an incredibly energy intensive and expensive process. They calculate that, using present technology, it would take an onshore wind farm covering 18,000 sq km to produce enough electricity to create green hydrogen to power all the UK’s long distance lorries. In the interim, industry lobbyists argue that the UK could use “blue hydrogen” created from natural gas. This produces carbon dioxide, which supporters of hydrogen suggest could be captured and stored. Critics point out that carbon capture and storage has never been successfully deployed. Hydrogen gas would also, at present rates, be about twice as expensive as natural gas, leading to higher bills for consumers or taxpayer subsidies. Richard Lowes, a research fellow at Exeter University’s energy policy group, said he was “deeply concerned” that the government might commit to an unproven technology. He said he feared the push for hydrogen was “just a delaying tactic by the gas industry”.
Times 24th Sept 2020 read more »
Letter David Cebon. much scientific evidence shows that widespread adoption of hydrogen (instead of electricity) for heating and heavy vehicles would be detrimental to the UK’s economy, its energy security and its decarbonisation commitments. A “green hydrogen” solution would consume six times more electricity to heat a house than an electric heat pump. A “blue hydrogen” solution would dramatically increase natural gas imports and/or fracking and would prevent net zero being reached because of fugitive CO2 emissions from the carbon sequestration process. Either hydrogen solution would permanently damage the UK economy.
Times 24th Sept 2020 read more »