Hydrogen is an important alternative for sectors that are stuck in the fossil fuel economy. As national governments and European parliamentarians negotiate the EU’s hydrogen strategy, EASAC issues a new commentary. “Hydrogen can help reduce our dependency on fossil fuels,” says William Gillett, EASAC’s Energy Programme Director. “But the climate benefits will be limited if we use fossil fuels to produce it – even with carbon capture and storage. The EU must stop all subsidies to fossil fuels. The fast-growing demand for hydrogen must be met by a massive increase of renewable electricity, together with certified imports from third countries.”
“Electricity is a great way to decarbonize our economy. But important sectors such as ships, trucks, planes, and steel production cannot easily be powered by electricity. To become climate neutral, they need a fuel that can be transported like oil or gasoline, or that can convert iron ore to steel at high temperatures like coal,” explains William Gillett, EASAC’s Energy Programme Director. “The growing demand for hydrogen and synthetic fuels will require much more renewable electricity to be generated in the EU. In addition, Europe will need imports and must therefore develop partnerships with third countries to drive global trade in renewable hydrogen and in technologies to produce it.”
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About the European Academies’ Science Advisory Council (EASAC)
EASAC is formed by the national science academies of the EU Member States, Norway, Switzerland, and the United Kingdom, to collaborate in giving advice to European policymakers. EASAC provides a means for the collective voice of European science to be heard. Through EASAC, the academies work together to provide independent, expert, evidence-based advice about the scientific aspects of European policies to those who make or influence policy within the European institutions.