Black & Veatch: Hydrogen Economy Taking Shape as Decarbonization Planning, Investments Accelerate

By March 17, 2021 3   min read  (606 words)

March 17, 2021 |

Fuel cells works, Black & Veatch: Hydrogen Economy Taking Shape as Decarbonization Planning, Investments Accelerate
  • New eBook highlights role of hydrogen in reducing carbon emissions within energy-intensive industries

OVERLAND PARK, Kan.–With expectations rising for more than $10 trillion (USD) of investments in hydrogen infrastructure by 2025, clean-burning, energy-dense hydrogen will be a critical element in decarbonizing the world’s energy systems, supply chains and heavy industries, finds Hydrogen 2021: The Path to Net Zero Becomes Clearer, a new eBook from energy transition leader Black & Veatch.

Based on the expertise and insights of Black & Veatch’s market, technology and infrastructure experts, the eBook explores the need to develop hydrogen infrastructure to help accelerate global carbon emissions reductions in the current decade. Although this effort will have its challenges, lessons from the renewable energy market provide a roadmap for rapid adoption.

“While renewable energy, including battery energy storage, are playing a vital role in achieving the world’s decarbonization targets, the need for a balanced generation portfolio continues,” said Jason Rowell, associate vice president and global technology portfolio manager with Black & Veatch’s global power business. “Hydrogen will play a pivotal role in tomorrow’s energy systems and we need serious investment in hydrogen today to achieve a shared vision for a more sustainable planet.”

Hydrogen 2021: The Path to Net Zero Becomes Clearer explores how planning, policies and investment in hydrogen as a zero-carbon fuel are gathering momentum and where progress is already underway. Key applications identified in the report include uses across power generation, transportation, residential and industrial heating, green chemicals and energy storage, which offers another alternative to battery energy storage. Plus, hydrogen’s ability to be stored and transported as ammonia will also help spur wide-scale adoption, particularly given the extensive existing global infrastructure.

More than 35 gigawatts of new hydrogen-capable power generation projects have been announced through 2030, including the Long Ridge Energy Terminal, a 485-MW combined-cycle natural gas project in Ohio and the Intermountain Power Project Renewal Project, an 840-MW combined-cycle gas facility in Utah. The eBook also references the 60-percent projected fall in cost of low-carbon and/or renewable hydrogen production by 2030 as outlined by the Hydrogen Council, which Black & Veatch recently joined. Industry estimates peg hydrogen is will replace upwards of 25 percent of oil demand by 2050 also.

Other opportunities for investment today include the integration of ammonia-ready storage and transportation infrastructure with global liquified natural gas infrastructure, and the adoption of hydrogen fuel cell electric vehicles for heavy transport and commercial use. At the same time, investments in transmission and distribution systems and technologies also play a pivotal role in what has become an increasingly important integrated power infrastructure model.

About Black & Veatch

Black & Veatch is an employee-owned engineering, procurement, consulting and construction company with a more than 100-year track record of innovation in sustainable infrastructure. Since 1915, we have helped our clients improve the lives of people in over 100 countries by addressing the resilience and reliability of our world’s most important infrastructure assets. Our revenues in 2019 were US$3.7 billion

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