Long distance green hydrogen delivery could be cost-effective, says European CommissionJune 17, 2021
The EC’s Joint Research Center published a policy brief revealing the feasibility of shipping H2.
A policy brief published by the European Commission’s (EC) Joint Research Center (JRC) shows the green hydrogen delivery in large amounts over long distances could be cost-effective.
Being able to affordably access adequate amounts of H2 is seen as vital to reaching climate goals.
Europe’s aim is to be climate neutral by 2050. An important part of this effort is seen as being able to affordably achieve green hydrogen delivery across long distances in large amounts to meet demand. Currently, renewable H2 produced with solar, wind, and other renewable electricity’s production costs cannot compete with H2 production powered by fossil fuels. That said, in order to meet climate neutrality goals, hydrogen fuel is needed, and it must be cleanly produced.
The report found that importing green hydrogen where renewable power is cheaper could present an important alternative to producing the H2 locally. However, this would of course lead to higher transport costs, which must be factored into the final total.
The report indicated that green hydrogen delivery could make the renewable fuel cost-effective.
To be transported, H2 must be liquefied, compressed, or converted into a hydrogen carrier such as organic H2 carriers or ammonia. The final cost of the delivery of the renewable fuel would need to include the amount of the fuel to be transported, the transport distance, the way the fuel is “packaged”, the final use, and the infrastructure availability.
The JRC pointed out that it is therefore critical to build an understanding of the transportation conditions for renewable hydrogen throughout the European Union or even across longer distances. That understanding must be thorough in order to ensure choices made involve solid economic sense.
The JRC developed both a database and an analytical tool to investigate each step of green hydrogen delivery. It was the results of that investigation that were printed in the recent policy brief. The investigation looked into various renewable H2 delivery pathways and their favorability for cost and energy demand. The database and analytical tool assessed each step across two different case studies to achieve the conclusion.