2021-08-11 / HFE Team
Green Hydrogen in India
The recently released IPCC Report has warned about the extreme impacts of Climate Change driven by Greenhouse Gas emissions. The need of the hour is to speed up the Energy Transition to cleaner energy generation. In the Clean Energy solution space, Green Hydrogen is starting to stand out as a viable alternative for replacing fossil fuels.
I personally see huge potential for Green Hydrogen in India. One of the biggest cost inputs in the production of Green Hydrogen is Electricity cost. Given its rich Renewable Energy resources, Solar and Wind, India has a competitive advantage and significant potential to supply low-cost electricity towards Green Hydrogen production. With the continuously falling cost of renewables, Green H2 is set to become the lowest cost source of hydrogen. Green Hydrogen can be at least ~USD 15 bn market in India by 2040, accounting for 60-80% of overall hydrogen opportunity here. Recent policy level interventions and the announcement of the National Hydrogen Mission are also indicative of the Government’s commitment and push to move the country towards Green Hydrogen based solutions.
To build a robust Green Hydrogen Economy, the nation needs to address the entire value chain from Renewable Energy, Electrolyzers and Fuel Cells, and to help in local technology development and manufacturing of these constituents of the entire value chain.
There are 3 key design considerations to be kept in mind to achieve the lowest possible cost of Green Hydrogen –
- Degree of co-location for value chain (RE source, Hydrogen production and End-use)
Fully integrated play with value chain co-location could lead to the most competitive Green Hydrogen production and use, so as to minimize Hydrogen transport considerations.
- Type of Renewable Energy setup (pure-play RE vs. Solar-Wind Hybrid vs. RE-Storage Hybrid, for higher utilization) Until Electrolyzer CapEx declines, benefit of increased utilization on cost of production could outweigh the increase in electricity cost from hybrid RE solutions.
- Technology of electrolyzer used (Alkaline vs PEM vs SOE) Alkaline and PEM technologies are expected to produce hydrogen at competitive costs by 2030, but this choice will likely be determined by continuing technology and efficiency evolution over time.
Along with the policy interventions to promote the use of this new fuel, we also need clear visibility on developing demand and shift in consumption. Green Hydrogen can decarbonise even the most traditional of industries but for that we must ensure adequate investments in these consumption sectors, and a long-term vision for adopting this new clean fuel.
Contributed by Srivatsan Iyer, Global CEO, Hero Future Energies