Hydrogen-fired power requires nearly $800bn investment – report

Posted: March 31, 2020 by oldbrew in Big Green, Emissions, Energy, ideology
Tags: , , ,

More pie in the sky from the green lobby. No sign here of how the hydrogen would be produced in sufficient quantities to replace all the world’s fuels. A bunch of wind turbines and solar installations would barely begin to do it, given they’re already fully occupied with ever-increasing electricity demand. If ‘infrastructure investment in storage might cost around $637 billion by 2050’, who would be willing to pay such eye-watering sums?
– – –
Carbon-free hydrogen production could significantly lower greenhouse gas emissions in power generation and manufacturing, but it will require a mammoth and long-term financial commitment to become cost competitive, says Power Engineering.

This is according to a new report by BloombergNEF. The research wing of media giant Bloomberg is focused on next-generation energy technologies which also reduce carbon emissions.

Hydrogen can be a zero-carbon substitute for fossil fuels. Companies such as Mitsubishi Hitachi Power Systems (MHPS), GE, Siemens and Ansaldo Energia already are working on programs to blend hydrogen into their turbine fuel mixes.

In fact, the BNEF report says, clean hydrogen deployment could cut about one-third of global greenhouse gas emissions from generation, heavy duty transportation and industrial manufacturing such as steel making.

The concept of clean or green hydrogen requires that renewables such as wind or solar power the electrolysis plants which would create the hydrogen by separating that molecule from water.

“Hydrogen has potential to become the fuel that powers a clean economy. In the years ahead, it will be possible to produce it at low cost using wind and solar power, to store it underground for months, and then to pipe it on-demand to power everything from ships to steel mills,” Kobad Bhavnagri, head of industrial decarbonization for BNEF and lead author of the report, said in a statement.

This vision will not come cheap. Bhavnagri’s report estimates that a hydrogen scale-up would require close to $150 billion in subsidies on the global level. It also factors in a cost applied to carbon such as a tax or allowance policy.

If these policies are put in place, the BNEF report suggests that renewable hydrogen could be produced at between 80 cents to $1.60 per kilogram in most of the world by 2050. That production cost is equivalent to natural gas priced at between $6 to $12 per million British thermal units (mmBtu), according to the report.

Full report here.

  1. Jim says:

    One of the two worst greenhouse gasses to put into our atmosphere. Hydrogen, burned to create heat. Produces water vapor. As it cools,produces clouds, reducing the heat of our star. That’s not counting the energy needed to split the molecules that are needed to produce the hydrogen. And since you don’t want salts in the evaporator, it’s got to be clean greasy water for drinking. Not even brackish water will do, and, then to hydrate a transportable substance, to move it? Not logical, not effecient, not saving.

  2. oldbrew says:

    More cash down the climate drain…

    DOE to provide $22M for research on capturing carbon dioxide from air
    31 March 2020

    The US Department of Energy (DOE) will provide up to $22 million for research aimed at achieving breakthroughs in the effort to capture carbon dioxide directly from ambient air (DAC).


    The carbon cycle already does this free of charge.

    ‘Essential to life’ – but the DOE wants to reduce it 🙄

  3. pochas94 says:

    I like hydrogen, but please no government handouts or sanctions, one way or the other. And CO2 should have nothing to do with it. Hydrogen will sell itself when the time comes. And you will stay warm in the winter without sacrificing your driving range.

  4. ivan says:

    I think they forgot a couple of zeros at the end of that financial requirement.

    Non of these hydrogen scams ever think about the storing of it for any length of time nor do they even consider the very real possibility of explosions from small leaks.

    The real big question is why use it when normal FF are so reliable, useful and just work? Maybe the eco-loons have absorbed too much of their own propaganda.

  5. oldbrew says:

    As Bill Gates said, time to quit jerking around with renewables and batteries.

  6. Graeme No.3 says:

    The major production method for hydrogen involves steam reforming of natural gas, and about 90 million tons are produced every year. The process requires heat.
    For every tonne of hydrogen produced this way, 9 tonnes of CO2 are also produced.

    The production by H.P. electrolysis cannot compete without very low electricity prices. How then could intermittent electricity from wind turbines be considered as an economic method?

    Storage would be a hazard. And the low density of hydrogen means that it won’t be a simple matter to just feed it in to existing processes. Vastly more costs not considered.

    Academic nonsense based on the assumption that there is unlimited money available to fix an unproven problem.

  7. Joe Public says:

    Remember when Harrabin claimed (for Britain) “The hydrogen could be generated pollution-free by using surplus wind power at night to split water molecules using electrolysis.”?

    The Beeb’s renowned (within their own circle-jerk) ‘energy’ analyst seems not to realise we have no ‘surplus wind power at night’ or any other time* – simply because as any fule kno we’re still using fossil fuels to generate ~40% of our electricity.

    [Except the unpredictable brief periods when turbine-owners are paid to NOT generate]


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