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Dr Paul Hatchwell

Dr Paul Hatchwell
@Paul_Hatchwell

Nov 24
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Blue hydrogen production with CCS requires larger amounts of costly fuel than unabated grey hydrogen and life cycle fugitive emissions render it incompatible with net zero. In most cases it cannot compete with renewable electrification and green hydrogen.

Robert Howarth

Robert Howarth
@howarth_cornell

Since blue hydrogen will always be more expensive than gray (it takes substantially more fossil nat gas, and extra hardware as well), we can safely conclude THERE IS NO FUTURE FOR BLUE HYDROGEN.
In the '90s, even in the 2000s, fossil gas was relatively cheap. We could have managed with a less sharp emissions reduction trajectory, though CCS commercialisation was then, as now, unproven at scale. But both the climate crisis & the gas market have moved on.
Blue hydrogen's obsolescent at best. It cannot compete with other renewables-powered domestic heat solutions, heat pumps, solar pv. It may still have niche uses in heavy industry, but even here new technologies such as green steel are appearing, green hydrogen's now competitive.
I realise of course that from an investment & employment point of view much has been promised through blue hydrogen linked to CCS clusters in regions such as the deprived North East. I used to cover these developments with interest.
And that's why just transition to net zero in these areas will need urgently to attract more investment into other activities, such as the wind industry, battery technologies, green hydrogen, heat pump manufacture, clean steel, tidal, innovative insulation products, among others.
Anything more than v limited transitional use of blue hydrogen in hard to abate sectors carries risk of carbon lock-in & stranded assets. But at current gas prices, hard to see even this as viable. Wherever possible, jumping a generation to clean technologies makes far more sense
Dr Paul Hatchwell

Dr Paul Hatchwell

@Paul_Hatchwell
Energy, Climate, Environmental Policy, Sustainability, Green Finance Writer, Consultant, NED; Energy & Climate Editor, ENDS 2008-2017; Environment Analyst 2018-
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