WindEurope and SolarPower Europe, supported by Breakthrough Energy, have launched a new coalition that is said to give voice to businesses and thought leaders who will be decisive in positioning Europe as the world leader in renewable hydrogen, produced via electrolysis and 100 per cent powered by renewable electricity.
The Renewable Hydrogen Coalition (RHC) was announced on 23 November alongside European Commissioner for Energy, Kadri Simson, under whose authority the European Commission presented the EU Hydrogen Strategy in July, setting the goal to produce 10 million tonnes of renewable hydrogen by 2030.
The launch also saw a new white paper issued, according to which Europe could commercialise renewable hydrogen faster than current strategies suggest through value chain collaborations with end-product producers, similar to what the European Battery Alliance has done for electric vehicles.
The coalition members called on leaders to redouble their efforts in research and demonstration, while scaling up investments to bring new technologies to the market more quickly.
In its declaration, the new coalition detailed the importance of renewable hydrogen in achieving the objectives of the European Green Deal and in reaching climate neutrality. Green hydrogen will help unlock the full decarbonisation potential of Europe’s economies, including end use markets such as aviation, shipping, and heavy industry, according to the declaration.
“To fully decarbonise energy in Europe we need renewable hydrogen. And it needs to be ‘made in Europe’. WindEurope is pleased to be part of this Coalition. We want to help build a strong European renewable hydrogen industry – based on European renewables”, said Giles Dickson, CEO of WindEurope.
Anja Dotzenrath, CEO of RWE Renewables, commented on the role offshore wind plays in achieving green hydrogen goals: “To help decarbonise the industry and hard to electrify sectors the European Hydrogen Strategy foresees 80-120GW of renewables are needed by 2030 to generate renewable hydrogen. Offshore wind can provide this additionality, but some prerequisites need to be fulfilled: offshore areas need to be auctioned and assigned fast and developers need a stable and effective support framework (carbon contract for difference). Furthermore, to incentivize hydrogen demand & supply the burden of levies and taxes on electricity need to be reduced”.
The green hydrogen coalition said it would build a high-level and interdisciplinary network of innovators, entrepreneurs, and corporate leaders from the rapidly growing renewable hydrogen community, including industrial off-takers.
It will also inform the policy debate with concrete proposals for the scaling up and market uptake of renewable hydrogen – traceability, infrastructure investments, market design, and incentives.