Transforming energy through a Hydrogen Economy
Bringing simplicity and lightness to a heavily polluted industry
How can the first, the lightest and the most simple element on the periodic table solve all major problems we are facing when it comes to energy consumption directly related to climate change ?
The hydrogen economy can revolutionise the global energy system without any harmful emissions. Hydrogen is a clean energy carrier — affordable, energy-dense and storable. Electricity for our daily lives produced within natural boundaries and stored in fuel cells. Amazing ?
What about ringing in the fossil-free age and reversing the damages that have been made to our environment within one generation ?
It is 2020 and we are early on.
Every beginning is hard — but thinking about the enormous positive impact that can be unleashed, every little step towards a hydrogen economy is definitely worth it.
This article will answer what is needed for a clean, secure and bright future.
How can hydrogen be used for daily energy consumption ?
Three of the biggest contributors to global warming are without a doubt: electricity, heat and transportation. Hydrogen can transform these major sources of daily used energy completely.
- In generation of energy: electricity could be produced from hydrogen.
- In the built environment: buildings could be heated through adapted systems.
- In transport hydrogen: fuel-cell cars could drive a major transformation.
What is the hydrogen economy ?
The hydrogen economy is a revolutionary way of using and producing energy by transforming hydrogen into a secondary source of energy used for creating electricity.
For a large scale adoption of hydrogen as our primary source of energy cost reductions to renewable-based electricity is needed.
The production of hydrogen can be achieved through various methods:
- Fossil fuels: steam reformation using a nickel catalyst fed by natural gas
- Water: Partial oxidation of methane
- Coal gasification
- Biomass gasification
Since 1975 the global production of hydrogen has been steadily growing.
Once energy is produced, it can be stored in fuel cells. Fuel cells convert chemicals to electrical energy and can be used like batteries.
It is not necessary to understand all of these terms and methods in order to see the benefits of the hydrogen economy and the way in which its use can reverse environmental damage.
What are the advantages of a hydrogen economy ?
The hydrogen economy is without doubt the most promising global energy system with no harmful emissions produced. Adapting to a hydrogen economy would bring various benefits with it such as:
- Reduction of carbon emissions
- Clean source of energy
- Reduction of air pollution
- Fossil Free source of energy
As always there is also a downside of a hydrogen economy.
What is the importance of hydrogen ?
Hydrogen used in highly efficient fuel cells, could prove to be the answer to our world’s growing concerns about energy security, urban pollution and climate change.
A considerable amount of research and development (R&D) is however still required in this sphere. One such hurdle which remains quite critical is the storage of hydrogen aboard vehicles.
Furthermore, experts predict that it can take several more decades before hydrogen takes its place as the world’s foremost energy source. Until then, we continue to rely on fossil fuels, though a phased approach, by way of “natural gas” is purported to provide the bridge between this existing fuel economy, and the hydrogen solution of the future.
Thankfully, governments around the world, in conjunction with energy companies, automobile manufacturers etc. are investing billions in hydrogen-supply and fuel cell R&D.
Wealthier nations however would soon be called upon to support their underdeveloped and developing neighbours, as the world collectively moves along the trajectory toward more sustainable energy solutions.
Summing up, the hydrogen economy provides a solution to all major energy related challenges. A clean provider of electricity that reduces carbon emissions.