Hydrogen will be a critical part of the future clean energy system, and the race is on to innovate value chains and business models to implement a vibrant Canadian hydrogen economy,”Dan Wicklum, CEO, The Transition Accelerator.
Environmental law experts say that President-elect Joe Biden will have to do more than restore Obama-era regulations if he hopes to meet his climate goals. He will have to strengthen and extend those rules, as well as extend regulation into new areas.https://t.co/kdjyxEnPYO
— InsideClimate News (@insideclimate) November 21, 2020
Canada has all the elements that could make it a leader in the clean hydrogen economy that many see as a critical part of the future for energy in a low carbon world — but Canada must act fast if it hopes to capitalize on its advantages and secure its lead as several other countries make progress in the hydrogen race, according to GLJ Ltd.
In an appearance on the Over A Barrel podcast produced by the Canadian Heavy Oil Association, Armando Montes and Devin Lacey from GLJ, a top Canadian energy resource consulting firm, lay out the many comparative advantages Canada, and in particular energy powerhouse Alberta, have to become global leaders in the hydrogen economy.
Alberta is already a major producer of grey hydrogen, used for industrial processes such as in bitumen upgrading, oil refining and chemical production. It is fortunate to have an opportunity to transition to production of blue hydrogen — produced from natural gas via steam methane reforming with the produced CO2 permanently sequestered — at very low cost relative to most other jurisdictions.
Alberta can leverage key advantages to mitigate many of the risks that currently drive the high cost of production for blue hydrogen elsewhere around the world. In addition to access to an abundance of low cost natural gas for use as feedstock in steam methane reforming, Canada has world leading expertise in carbon capture, use and sequestration (CCUS) technology and application, Montes and Lacey said.
Carbon capture and storage are key to achieving climate goals.
Aiming to avoid the worst effects of climate change, from severe droughts to extreme coastal flooding, the nearly 200 nations that signed the 2015 Paris Agreement set a long-term goal of keeping global warming well below 2 degrees Celsius. Achieving that goal will require dramatic reductions in greenhouse gas emissions, primarily through a global transition to low-carbon energy technologies. In the power sector, these include solar, wind, biomass, nuclear, and carbon capture and storage (CCS). According to more than half of the models cited in the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change’s (IPCC) Fifth Assessment Report, CCS will be required to realize the Paris goal, but to what extent will it need to be deployed to ensure that outcome?
A new study in Climate Change Economics, led by the MIT Joint Program on the Science and Policy of Global Change, projects the likely role of CCS in the power sector in a portfolio of low-carbon technologies. Using the Joint Program’s multi-region, multi-sector energy-economic modeling framework to quantify the economic and technological competition among low-carbon technologies as well as the impact of technology transfers between countries, the study assessed the potential of CCS and its competitors in mitigating carbon emissions in the power sector under a policy scenario aligned with the 2C Paris goal.
The researchers found that under this scenario and the model’s baseline estimates of technology costs and performance, CCS will likely be incorporated in nearly 40 percent of global electricity production by 2100 — one-third in coal-fired power plants, and two-thirds in those run on natural gas.
“Our projections show that CCS can play a major role in the second half of this century in mitigating carbon emissions in the power sector,” says Jennifer Morris, an MIT Joint Program research scientist and the lead author of the study. “But in order for CCS to be well-positioned to provide stable and reliable power during that time frame, research and development will need to be scaled up.”
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