Green Hydrogen and the Future of Energy
The discussion about green energy and the future of power has never been more relevant than in today’s economic climate. As manifested in COP27, one of the world’s largest panels on climate action, energy is prioritized among the 11 most important issues. With specific focus on alternative sources of clean energy called “Green Hydrogen.” This technology is based on hydrogen generation through a chemical process known as electrolysis, using an electrical current to separate the hydrogen from the oxygen in water without emitting carbon dioxide. To ensure zero carbon emissions, the electricity utilized in the process is also be obtained via renewable sources.
THE ADVANTAGE OF GREEN HYDROGEN
Aside from water vapor, Green Hydrogen is another clean energy source that leaves no residue in the air, unlike coal and fossil fuels. Therefore, combustion and production are 100% sustainable throughout the entire process. Moreover, hydrogen once produced is easily storable and versatile; it can be used subsequently and transformed into electricity or synthetic gas. The COP27 forum stated that “developing green hydrogen value chains can yield economic value, create jobs and contribute to achieving global emission reduction targets.” This reflects how businesses in the industries, large or small, should be encouraged to adopt this sustainable technology to tap into new market opportunities and align themselves with the world.
Although this clean energy comes with various advantages, there are issues concerning cost, safety, and demand prohibiting the widespread use of green hydrogen. The energy from renewable sources, generated through electrolysis, is more expensive than those from non-renewable sources. Apart from the high production price, extensive safety measures are also required since hydrogen is a highly volatile and flammable element prone to leakage and explosions. With these two aspects explained, the market demand for green hydrogen is still less than fossil fuel–less likely to generate an economy of scale.
GREEN HYDROGEN AS A GLOBAL AGENDA
While hydrogen can be used to fuel cars, airships, and spaceships, 95% of the current demand is from the Oil & Gas and Chemicals industries. The data from COP27 shows that “90 million tonnes of hydrogen are produced annually, mainly from natural gas, while less than 0.5% of this hydrogen was produced from renewable electricity in 2020.” Currently, the private and public sectors and international organizations have been more concerned about this issue and are attempting to promote this technology for broader practice. In COP27, green hydrogen leaders and the maritime sector were called for action and successfully agreed to sign the Joint Statement on Green Hydrogen and Green Shipping.
No businesses run with carbon-free emissions, but more or less contribute to climate degradation. All businesses require one or another of these sources of energy. However, oil and gas companies that are fundamentally generating and taking the most advantage out of sources of energy must be the first ones who pioneer and initiate a solution. They should also take this as an opportunity and advantage to create the business's next growth by sustainably transforming. The effort may be costly, but the result will be worthwhile.
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