Seven international companies have announced a global coalition aiming to accelerate the scale and production of green hydrogen 50-fold in the next six years.
The new Green Hydrogen Catapult initiative will see the seven – ACWA Power, CWP Renewables, Envision, Iberdrola, Ørsted, Snam, and Yara – target deployment of 25 gigawatts through 2026 of renewables-based hydrogen production, with a view to halve the current cost of hydrogen to less than $2 per kilogram.
According to the Hydrogen Council, $2-per-kilogram represents a potential tipping point that will make green hydrogen and its derivative fuels the energy source of choice across multiple sectors.
Green hydrogen is produced by using renewable energy (wind and solar) to power electrolysis that splits water into its constituent parts. It is widely regarded as the leading contender to decarbonise emissions-intensive heavy industry and transport sectors.
“Having led the race to deliver photovoltaic energy at well-below $2 cents per kilowatt-hour, in certain geographies, we believe the collective ingenuity and entrepreneurship of the private sector can deliver green hydrogen at less than US$2 per kilogram within four years,” said Paddy Padmanathan, CEO of ACWA Power.
“From an industry perspective, we see no technical barriers to achieving this, so it’s time to get on with the virtuous cycle of cost reduction through scale up.”
The Green Hydrogen Catapult aims to align the production and use of green hydrogen with a trajectory that displaces fossil fuels at a rate consistent with achieving net zero global emissions by 2050, and limiting global temperature increases to 1.5 degrees Celsius.
In this way, the initiative is a key element of the private sector climate action strategy being pursued by UN High-Level Champions for Global Climate Action Nigel Topping and Gonzalo Muñoz through their “Race to Zero” campaign.
“The world urgently needs to massively ramp up deployment of breakthrough solutions like green hydrogen,” said Topping. “The bold vision and leadership of businesses can propel green hydrogen along an exponential growth trajectory to support economic recovery and deep decarbonization sooner than anticipated.”
Goldman Sachs estimates that green hydrogen could supply up to 25% of the world’s energy needs by 2050 and become a $10 trillion market by 2050.
“Scaling up green hydrogen using existing infrastructure will be crucial to reaching climate goals,” said Marco Alverà, CEO of Snam. “We believe that this new ‘coalition of the willing’ composed of leading companies in the private sector, with expertise, commitment and confidence in hydrogen’s potential, will play an important role in fostering cooperation and help to deliver the projects necessary to bring green hydrogen costs to the $2/kg tipping point even sooner than expected.”