Hydrogen fuel offers clean energy through good businessDecember 27, 2022
Africa found itself in the spotlight last month at COP27 when global leaders discussed the climate crisis.
Global leaders at last month’s COP27 scrambled to use available information and resources to build strategies around options such as hydrogen fuel in order to control greenhouse gas emissions and avoid catastrophic climate change that will happen if the world warms by over 2ºC.
There, it became more than clear that Africa presents massive opportunities for clean H2 production.
At the same time, it was also shown that power sectors could be decarbonized using options such as hydrogen fuel, while sticking to good business and strong economic practices. This placed the spotlight on Loughborough University’s doctoral research Mulako Mukelabai and Dr. Richard Blanchard, who worked with Professor Upul Wijayantha from Cranfield University, and their research into the opportunity Africa has to offer and that it has to gain from global decarbonization.
Their research showed that Africa has tremendous clean energy resources and the minerals required for the production and transmission of renewably produced electricity. In this way, many of the countries throughout the continent are already aligned to supply clean energy to millions of homes and businesses, helping the world to keep up with its net-zero targets.
Africa could thrive in green hydrogen fuel production due to the resources it already has.
Even though the continent contributes only 3 percent of the total worldwide greenhouse gas emissions as its current economic activities are low, it has a strong reliance on wood, coal, and other traditional biomass fuels in order to meet its energy needs. This practice is neither environmentally friendly nor is it good for local human health.
That said, Mulako and the research team published a paper in the Renewable and Sustainable Energy Reviews Journal, in which they placed a specific focus on hydrogen fuel’s role in decarbonizing Africa, just as the continent is already primed to become a major player in this clean energy in terms of exports, as was covered last month in a Hydrogen Fuel News article.
Many African countries have substantial renewable electricity generation resources, such as solar and wind energy. Moreover, they also have proximity to Europe, which is seeking to import hydrogen fuel as a zero-emission energy source. Furthermore, others not close to Europe are positioned along shipping lanes that would allow for export to other regions of the globe.
As a result, Africa has more than enough resources and export capacity to meet its own domestic clean energy needs while also meeting demand from the rest of the world.
HYDROGEN POLL: Cost and infrastructure aside, are you ready to use hydrogen as a source of fuel for home heating?