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The CEO of German energy firm RWE has known as for the use of hydrogen in sectors the place electrification is simply not an choice, telling CNBC that “in the end, all hydrogen needs to be green.”
In an interview earlier this week it was put to Markus Krebber that Volkswagen CEO Herbert Diess had argued hydrogen was not the reply for the German automotive giant.
“I actually agree with Herbert Diess because … he says that hydrogen is not the solution for passenger transportation and I think here, electrification — direct electrification — is the solution,” Krebber replied.
“But we need hydrogen for those parts of the economy which cannot be electrified,” he stated. “So let’s think about aviation, maritime transportation, heavy duty trucks, but also … steel and chemicals.”
Diess has beforehand expressed robust views on the use of hydrogen in automobiles. “It’s time for politicians to accept science,” he tweeted back in February.
“Green hydrogen is needed for steel, chemical, aero … and should not end up in cars,” he stated.
“Far too expensive, inefficient, slow and difficult to rollout and transport. After all: no #hydrogen cars in sight.”
Hydrogen, which has a various vary of functions and will be deployed in a variety of industries, will be produced in a quantity of methods.
One technique consists of utilizing electrolysis, with an electrical present splitting water into oxygen and hydrogen.
If the electrical energy used on this course of comes from a renewable supply comparable to wind or photo voltaic then some name it inexperienced or renewable hydrogen.
Today, a spread of colours — together with brown, blue, grey and pink, to call a number of — are used to distinguish between numerous manufacturing strategies for hydrogen. For his half, Krebber defined it was necessary to be pragmatic about colour codes.
“In the end, all hydrogen needs to be green, because green hydrogen is the only fuel which is … fully decarbonized,” he stated. In the meantime, industries wanted to take choices to spend money on new amenities and make them “H2 ready.”
“Of course, there is not enough green hydrogen available in the short term, so you need to allow them to run it first on natural gas then, maybe, on all other colors [of] hydrogen … especially blue,” he stated. “But the moment green hydrogen is available, to the extent needed, they should switch to green hydrogen.”
Blue hydrogen refers to hydrogen produced utilizing pure fuel — a fossil gasoline — with the CO2 emissions generated through the course of captured and saved.
While there’s pleasure in some quarters concerning the potential of inexperienced hydrogen, the overwhelming majority of hydrogen era is at the moment based mostly on fossil fuels.
In current instances, some enterprise leaders have spoken of the problems they felt have been going through the rising inexperienced hydrogen sector. In October, for instance, the CEO of Siemens Energy advised CNBC there was “no commercial case” for it at this second in time.
Looking on the greater image and the event of a hydrogen financial system, RWE’s Krebber sought to sketch out how current infrastructure may very well be used within the years forward.
“We have, already today, a very dense network of pipelines across Europe,” he stated. “And actually what we are intending to do as an industry is, we want to repurpose the current fossil infrastructure into the new green infrastructure.”
Krebber’s view echoes a degree made by Marco Alverà, the CEO of Italian agency Snam, earlier this 12 months. In July, Alverà outlined a imaginative and prescient for the longer term of hydrogen, saying the “beauty” of it was that it may very well be simply saved and transported.
Speaking to CNBC, he spoke about how present methods can be used to facilitate the supply of hydrogen produced utilizing renewable sources in addition to biofuels.
“Right now, if you turn on your heater in Italy the gas is flowing from Russia, all the way from Siberia, in pipelines,” he stated.
“Tomorrow, we will have hydrogen produced in North Africa, in the North Sea, with solar and wind resources,” Alverà stated. “And that hydrogen can travel through the existing pipeline.”