Hydrogen is an essential component of fuel cells. Sure, we all know that. However, did you know that all types of the gas are not created equally? Green hydrogen has gained a lot of momentum in renewable circles today.
Hydrogen is produced by electrolyzing water. The process involves passing an electric current through water (under regulated conditions) to break its chemical composition.
A close cousin of the traditional gas, green hydrogen is the by-product when the current is generated with clean power. According to Bloomberg New Energy Finance, green hydrogen could fulfill 24% of the world’s energy demands by 2050. The result? A 34% reduction in CO2 emissions.
Consequently, green hydrogen is being termed as a lucrative ‘fuel of the future.’ Global oil and gas players are considering options for setting up plants to power its production in an environmentally friendly manner.
And this idea is turning into a looming reality with the proliferation of solar PV and wind energy, along with plummeting levelized costs.
The World’s Largest Green Hydrogen Plant
Solar or wind energy power the electrolysis process to produce green hydrogen. And that’s the plan for Neom, the smart city project in Saudi Arabia that borders Egypt and Jordon.
The U.S. industrial gas giant, Air Products and Chemicals, recently announced a partnership with Neom authorities. Together, they plan to build a $5 billion green hydrogen plant within the smart city.
The plant will use 4 GWs of solar and wind power to generate 650 tons of green hydrogen. For context, this amount will be enough to power 20,000 hydrogen friendly buses.
Moreover, being the largest, and one of its kind in the world, the Neom plant also aims to spend an additional $2 billion on infrastructural investments. Doing so will open doors to shipping the gas across borders.
Hence, Air Products plans to convert the gas into ammonia for transportation. Once at the destination, it can be used to power commercial vehicles around the world. The facility for this conversion has a timeline for 2025.
Experts assert that green hydrogen will play a crucial role in reaching the climate goals set by the Paris Agreement. Therefore, expanding the market for sustainable fuels is definitely the way to go to make ‘majority renewables by 2030’ a reality.