A new report examining various scenarios of hydrogen adoption in North-West Europe has found that demand could exceed 700 terrawatts (TWh) by 2050, Kallanish Energy reports.
The hydrogen in the Northwest European energy system report, published by Aurora Energy Research, assesses the role of hydrogen in the energy systems of Germany, Belgium, and the Netherlands, evaluating the sectorial demand uptake, technological progress, costs and market developments in several scenarios.
In a “high-demand” scenario, the report forecasts that demand for hydrogen from the region could reach as high as 727 TWh in 2050, with the majority coming from the feedstock (303 TWh), heating (225 TWh) and transport (147 TWh) sectors. In a “low-demand” scenario, overall demand could reach 214 TWh.
In the report’s scenarios, the first applications for low-carbon hydrogen will be as feedstock for chemicals and refineries, as well as for new processes in the production of steel and cement. The report states that this provides an “important pathway” to reaching the European Union’s net-zero emissions targets set for 2050.
One of the report’s other major findings was that both blue hydrogen (produced from natural gas) and green hydrogen (produced from renewables) will be important drivers for demand. However, it is estimated that green hydrogen will not become competitive with blue hydrogen until the 2040s without additional investment support.
The report also recommends the exploration of carbon capture and storage (CCS) technologies in continental Europe, as there are “important industrial clusters where domestic CCS is more economical than hydrogen imports from Norway,” alongside expansion of hydrogen storage facilities.
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