Hydrogen Economy

We should try not to Waste hydrogen!
June 18, 2024
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The Hydrogen Economy #51

We should try not to Waste hydrogen!

Key Points

  • We are hitting a confluence of issues with hydrogen in that early estimates of production costs are proving too optimistic, and it is increasingly evident that few are willing to pay up for a more expensive product.
  • Given the enormous volume of waste and biomass globally, currently either landfilled or put to low-value use, incentives and investments to help improve technology in these areas seem logical, and costs could be low.
  • Even if we burn biomass or waste, we are substituting for fossil fuels, but we do not solve the carbon challenge unless this can be done with carbon capture – there is an argument that this is circular, but it is a weak one.
  • It would be better to access both the hydrogen and the carbon from the biomass/waste, and this is why some of the projects targeting fuels make a lot of sense, even if there are challenges with the technology.
  • Otherwise, we see more high-cost projects in Europe, clearly very dependent on subsidies, and growing power supply challenges.

Exhibit 1: Every source of hydrogen is dilute, but extraction from waste and biomass is more problematic, although not necessarily more expensive.

Source: Capital IQ and C-MACC Analysis

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