Hydrogen offers great potential to play a key role in a clean, secure and affordable energy future, according to International Energy Agency's (IEA) The Future of Hydrogen: Seizing Today’s Opportunities report released on Friday.
Hydrogen gas can be obtained through synthetic processes from fossil fuels, renewable energy, biomass, and water.
It can help tackle various critical energy challenges as it offers ways to decarbonize a range of carbon intensive sectors, IEA said and added that the use of hydrogen can also help improve air quality and strengthen energy security.
"Technologies already available today enable hydrogen to produce, store, move and use energy in different ways. A wide variety of fuels are able to produce hydrogen, including renewables, nuclear, natural gas, coal and oil," IEA said.
Hydrogen can enable renewables to provide an even greater contribution, IEA said and added that "hydrogen is one of the leading options for storing energy from renewables and looks promising to be a lowest-cost option for storing electricity over days, weeks or even months."
Hydrogen is used mostly in oil refining and for the production of fertilizers but for it to make a significant contribution to clean energy transitions, it also needs to be adopted in sectors such as transport, buildings and power generation, IEA said.
Despite its advantages, the use of clean hydrogen is restricted because of high costs relating to producing hydrogen from low-carbon energy.
The cost of producing hydrogen from renewable electricity could fall 30% by 2030 as a result of declining costs of renewables and the scaling up of hydrogen production, IEA estimates.
The IEA offers seven recommendations to scale up hydrogen including, establishing a role for hydrogen in long-term energy strategies, stimulate commercial demand for clean hydrogen, address investment risks, support research and development to lower costs.
Additionally, IEA underlines the importance of eliminate unnecessary regulatory barriers and harmonizing standards, engage internationally and tracking the progress and focusing on key opportunities to increase the use of clean hydrogen in the future.
By Zeynep Beyza Kilic