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Hydrogen Strategy for a climate-neutral Europe

On 8th of July, the European Commission unveiled the EU`s Hydrogen Strategy, a strategy for a climate-neutral Europe, which addresses how the decarbonisation of industrial processes, power generation, transport sector and building stocks can be supported by hydrogen in an integrated energy system. The strategy demonstrates, how this potential can be realized, by investment, regulation, research and innovation.

Hydrogen has the potential to contribute significantly to the clean energy transition as well as to the achievement of the objectives set out in the European Green Deal. For instance, hydrogen can help to bridge the gap in sectors that are not suitable for electrification, to balance variable renewable energy flows.

To exploit the full potential of hydrogen, its production needs to be fully decarbonized and its use needs to be upscaled. The strategy states that, renewable hydrogen should be produced by using mainly wind and solar energy, although in short and medium terms, other forms of low carbon hydrogen are needed.

The transitions should take place in a phased approach:

  • From 2020 to 2024: Commission supports the installation of at least 6 gigawatts of renewable hydrogen electrolysers in the EU, in order to produce up to 1 million tonnes of renewable hydrogen;
  • From 2025 to 2030:  hydrogen needs to become an intrinsic part of Europe’s integrated energy system, with at least 40 gigawatts of renewable hydrogen electrolysers and the production of up to 10 million tonnes of renewable hydrogen in the EU;
  • From 2030 to 2050: renewable hydrogen technologies should reach maturity and be deployed at large scale across all hard-to-decarbonize sectors.

To implement this phased approach, the Commission launched the European Clean Hydrogen Alliance that aims at the ambitious deployment of hydrogen technologies by 2030, bringing together renewable and low-carbon hydrogen production, demand in industry, mobility and other sectors, and hydrogen transmission and distribution.

The full text of the EU Hydrogen Strategy is available here.