March 10, 2021

Realizing a Hydrogen Economy: Introducing the Series

Holland & Knight Energy and Natural Resources Blog
Seth R. Belzley | Taite R. McDonald
wind turbine and solar panel

Suddenly, everyone is talking about hydrogen. It's not as though hydrogen, the most abundant element in the universe, and its promise for greening the energy mix have been any secret. But the convergence of several factors has energy executives worldwide focusing on hydrogen as a major and indispensable piece of the puzzle that the world is trying to put together to supply the growing demand for energy while addressing climate change. Certainly, the potential is promising. Green hydrogen can be produced using low-cost renewable energy. It can be burned alongside methane to quickly reduce the carbon intensity of existing natural gas-fired technologies over the short run. Over the longer run, hydrogen fuel cells can power everything from the power grid to ships and cars. Much of the existing infrastructure and expertise of energy companies – and the existing legal framework – can be adapted to support hydrogen without starting from scratch. In short, there's a lot to like about hydrogen. But there's also a long way to go before hydrogen, which currently accounts for around 5 percent of the world's energy, can be scaled to power the world economy.

Over the coming weeks, a broad team from Holland & Knight will explore the issues that must be addressed and resolved in "Realizing a Hydrogen Economy." Certainly, the United States federal government's support will be essential, both from a policy and financing perspective, to enable a transformation this bold. But the market incentives for private companies, both for those looking to decarbonize their operations and those looking to earn a return helping them do so, is essential as well. Achieving the full potential of hydrogen will take economies of scale and, in turn, the coordination of demand and supply efforts among market participants around the world.

This series will explore the promise that hydrogen presents for decarbonizing the transportation industry – marine, air, road and rail – and the infrastructure and related regulatory challenges to overcome in the effort to build a logistics system to supply all of the demand. There is no shortage of issues to consider. The Holland & Knight team is looking forward to exploring them in the series, "Realizing a Hydrogen Economy."

Part 1: Hydrogen Production from Excess Renewables

Part 2: U.S. Federal Government and the Hydrogen Economy 2021

Part 3: Future Fuels in the Maritime Sector – Building the Bridge to Hydrogen

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