228 hydrogen projects announced globally so far; Council members include BP, Shell, Siemens Energy, Toyota, BMW, Microsoft
The Hydrogen Council has released a report which projects that hydrogen production could potentially attract investments of up to $300 billion by the end of this decade. The Hydrogen Council is a coalition of 109 industry leaders and SMEs from a wide variety of sectors with a stake in clean energy. It includes companies such as BP, Shell, Siemens Energy, Toyota, BMW and Microsoft and has a combined market value exceeding $8.8 trillion.
The findings have been buoyed by an array of companies (including Hydrogen Council members) announcing serious plans to develop hydrogen production capacity around the world. Titled ‘Hydrogen Insights 2021: A Perspective on Hydrogen Investment, Deployment and Cost Competitiveness’, the report’s projections are based on the assumption that these hydrogen projects will secure funding and successfully start operations on target. As of this moment, 228 projects have been announced around the world of which over half are located in Europe. Most of these projects are slated to enter operations by the end of this decade. They focus on either producing hydrogen using renewable sources or combining fossil fuel-based hydrogen production with carbon capture and storage technology. However, funding for a majority of these projects has not been secured yet.
The report is optimistic given the European Union’s push to operationalize hydrogen as a major force in eliminating greenhouse emissions completely by 2050. Currently, the EU has less than 0.1GW hydrogen capacity in deployment which it plans to boost to 40GW by 2030. Hydrogen is a key component of the EU’s vision to scale up the decarbonization of emission-rich industries such as steel, heavy transport, cement and chemicals. Daryl Wilson, Executive Director of the Hydrogen Council said that Europe’s leading position as a hydrogen manufacturer was in part due to its early investment in hydrogen supply chains, visionary projects like Germany’s hydrogen-fuelled trains and its strong push towards progressive climate change policies. “That stable policy commitment environment allows the industry to have the confidence to act,” he said. In the next few years, Hydrogen Council members have pledged significant investment in hydrogen, an almost six-fold increase since 2019.