Staying Ahead is a series on the latest market trends, focusing on Energy Transition, Climate-tech, and ESG/Sustainability. It is our mission to work with people and organisations to drive the transition towards a sustainable and innovative future.
What’s the next big transition and innovation emerging into the ESG and Sustainability space? In the past years, a lot of attention and focus has been geared towards hydrogen, which isn’t surprising. Hydrogen is one of the most abundant elements in the universe, and will likely become the most key source of energy for the future years to come.
Due to hydrogen’s light, storable, and energy dense qualities, the demand for hydrogen has tripled since 1975. Through chemical engineering and technical processes, hydrogen has become a commodity which we can use in our everyday life. It is seen in all industries, from powering household appliances, to fuelling transportation, to increasing our power system flexibility.
The greatest challenge we face is the capture of hydrogen. There are various processes to extract hydrogen from fossil fuels, biomass, and water. However, different processes produce different levels of carbon impact. At the moment, the most common hydrogen used globally is labeled gray hydrogen, which is created through using fossil fuels such as natural gas, ethanol, or propane and going through a process known as steam methane reformation (SMR). This method of extracting hydrogen leaves a carbon impact of 8-12 (kg CO2/kg H2), and is 70% of the hydrogen we use today.
If we are looking to move towards a net-zero and sustainable future, there is a need to transition to a cleaner production process. The solution we are now working towards is green hydrogen, which is created through renewable energy sources, such as solar, wind, hydro power, etc. leaving 0 carbon impact. In 2019, Green Hydrogen production accounts for only 0.1% of global production.
Fortunately, the government and key stakeholders are now taking action to invest and drive international cooperation to overcome the current barriers and reduce the cost. Recently, IEA analysis finds that the cost of producing green hydrogen could fall 30% by 2030 as a result of declining costs of renewables and the scaling up of hydrogen production.
We are extremely excited to be part of this transition by playing a role expanding the Hydrogen market and working towards a net-zero future and sustainable economy. We’re also excited to help our clients and candidates be a part of this as well.
If you’re interested in learning more about this innovation or want to be a part of it, please reach out to our specialists in the hydrogen team to learn more.