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Opinion

Hydrogen powering our future: would you bet on it?  

Can we rely on hydrogen as a viable alternative source of energy

1 minute read

The Interchange is back! As we near the end of January, the focus in the energy world is on viable alternatives to fossil fuels. Hydrogen has dominated the conversation in recent months, touted as the ‘silver bullet’ for tackling the climate crisis. But is that the case, or is it just hype?  

In 2021, hydrogen production that was ‘green’ (produced from renewables) was at 1%. In 2022, that number has barely increased. Most of our current hydrogen production is from fossil fuels and used to produce other chemicals such as ammonia. All the focus in the industry, and the media, is on the green and the blue. These yield 11 million Google results, against 95,000 for grey and 49,000 for brown. Great news – we must be currently produced green hydrogen in the majority. Wrong. Only 0.04% of hydrogen produced is green. 96% is grey, or brown, produced for use in oil refineries and for manufacturing ammonia.  

On the Interchange this week, David is joined by Luke Johnson, Managing Director and Founder of H2 Green. They’re a UK based company aiming to build green hydrogen production hubs across Europe, to produce and deliver hydrogen where needed. Luke is a serial entrepreneur with experience in energy and technology, across Australian, US, German and UK markets. Wood Mackenzie’s Melany Vargas also joins the show - she’s the Head of Hydrogen Consulting at Wood Mackenzie, and brings experience across the global energy value chain.  

Together they look at the agenda of governments worldwide to turn this ship around. Do plans even exist to do so? Is the focus on green hydrogen production a distraction from the true industry practices? Can we rely on hydrogen as a viable alternative source of energy and can it be produced sustainably? At the moment, it’s not looking good.  

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