The European Commission is poised to launch its highly anticipated Hydrogen Bank this week in a bid to boost the use of renewable hydrogen and reduce the EU’s carbon footprint. As part of this initiative, €800 million will be made available from European funds to support the industry and encourage private investment.
Renewable hydrogen is expected to play a pivotal role in the EU’s efforts to decarbonize and achieve its emissions reduction targets by 2050. The Commission Executive Vice President, Maroš Šefčovič, emphasized the importance of leading in the development of new technologies and demonstrating the ability to replace fossil fuels with green hydrogen. This includes producing low-carbon steel, powering vehicles with clean energy, and generating electricity without emitting pollutants.
Despite accounting for less than 2% of the bloc’s energy consumption in 2022, hydrogen has immense potential as a clean energy source. The EU aims to produce 10 million tonnes of renewable hydrogen by 2030 and import another ten million from other countries. The bloc’s Hydrogen Week in Brussels seeks to bring together policymakers, researchers, and industry stakeholders to further develop and use hydrogen for various applications such as transportation, heating, and industrial processes.
The ongoing energy crisis in Europe has highlighted the need for more domestic hydrogen production capabilities, particularly in countries with significant wind and solar resources. While several projects are already underway, including Germany’s plan for a 400-mile hydrogen pipeline under the North Sea and an underwater pipeline between Spain and France, much work remains to be done in terms of infrastructure development and investment in renewable hydrogen sources. Collaborations with countries like South Africa, Brazil, and Saudi Arabia are also essential components of the EU’s renewable hydrogen strategy.
In conclusion, the launch of the Hydrogen Bank marks an important milestone in advancing renewable energy sources within Europe. With growing concerns about climate change and sustainability worldwide, it is crucial that we continue to invest in clean energy technologies like green hydrogen that can help us achieve our emissions reduction goals while also promoting economic growth and job creation.