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Emergence of Blue-Hydrogen

September 1st, 2020

The green energy revolution may be blue-shifting as the EU considers including blue-hydrogen on the cusp of announcing its long-term hydrocarbon strategy. In the current de-carbonization regime, blue hydrogen is emerging as a feasible alternative to other, so-called ‘green’ hydrogen extraction processes. A carbon-neutral product, blue-hydrogen is produced from natural gas via steam methane reforming (SMR) and carbon capture and storage (CCS) technologies. In contrast, green-hydrogen relies exclusively on large amounts of electricity to separate the hydrogen from water molecules.

OPEC recently announced that it would be evaluating blue-hydrogen in the context of cyber security, blockchain, and digitalization during its upcoming virtual workshop on energy and information technology on September 21 this year. While producing blue-hydrogen is considered less environmentally impactful (than electricity intensive green-hydrogen extraction processes) EU and OPEC stakeholders need to reconcile its purported long-term benefits with its dependence on avant garde extraction processes and natural gas, with all the geopolitics and price volatility which comes with it.

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