EI LIVE I Evaluating the energy balance and efficiency of a whole hydrogen energy system





Webinar Title : Evaluating the energy balance and efficiency of a whole hydrogen energy system, from production to consumption."

EI LIVE I Energy Balance

DATE: May 29, 1:00 – 2:15PM

The global imperative to significantly reduce greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions has led to a growing interest in the role of hydrogen in the energy transition. With the UK's legally binding targets to achieve 'net zero' by 2050, understanding the efficiencies and emissions of hydrogen in comparison to other fuels is paramount for informed decision-making in energy policy.

This webinar presents the findings of a study aimed at comprehensively analysing the energy balance and efficiency of the entire hydrogen energy system, from production to consumption, within a UK setting. The study, conducted in phases, delved into three specific areas of the hydrogen supply chain: production, transmission, storage, and distribution, as well as usage and consumption across various sectors including electricity, heating, and transportation.

The Research report: Application of life cycle assessment methodology to the understanding of the energy balance and efficiency of hydrogen value chain building blocks was published in May of 2022.

Key Findings:

  1. Efficiency Ranges: Study shows inefficiencies in hydrogen production and consumption. Distribution/storage have minimal impact. Technologies like liquefaction and long-distance trucking are less efficient but viable.
  2. Feedstock Comparison: Analysis of natural gas, blue hydrogen, green hydrogen, and UK electricity highlights hydrogen's emission reduction potential. Blue hydrogen reduces emissions but increases feedstock consumption. Green hydrogen offers greater reductions despite current lower efficiency.
  3. Blue Hydrogen vs. Natural Gas: Switching to blue hydrogen cuts emissions but raises feedstock consumption and costs.
  4. Green Hydrogen vs. Electrification: Comparing for applications like FCVs and CHP systems reveals trade-offs between emissions reduction and efficiency. Green hydrogen offers emissions benefits but efficiency varies based on renewable energy sources.

Speaker : Ian Arbon

Ian Arbon is a Chartered Mechanical Engineer, a Registered European Engineer and a Chartered Environmentalist, with an MSc in ‘Renewable Energy and the Environment’ and an MBA. He has over 50 years of experience in hydrogen compression and is past MD of several UK compressor manufacturing companies; he now runs Engineered Solutions, a Sustainable Engineering and Management consultancy. Ian is a Fellow of IMechE; having chaired its Energy, Environment & Sustainability Group and its Renewable Power Committee, he has a long history in spearheading the Institution’s work in hydrogen. He is also a Fellow of the Energy Institute, and sits on the Hydrogen Committees of both bodies. In recent years, he has been a Visiting Professor in Alternative Energy at Newcastle University, an Honorary Professor in Sustainable Energy at the University of Glasgow and a Visiting Professor in the Centre for Energy Policy at the University of Strathclyde