To avoid underinvestment or overinvestment in the green hydrogen infrastructure a mechanism is needed to stimulate optimization in all available types of hydrogen transfer, such as electricity and repurposed gas networks, purpose-built hydrogen grids, road, rail, or marine transport, Rahmat Poudineh, Director of Research for Electricity Program at Oxford Institute for Energy Studies said, Trend reports via the Institute.
According to the director, the net-zero carbon target implies significant changes in the current energy transmission infrastructure, mainly, to support the delivery and use of hydrogen. In this regard, the repurposing of the existing infrastructure to transport green hydrogen is more convenient than building a new one. At the same time, in order to repurpose existing gas pipelines, a mechanism is needed to evaluate these infrastructures and exclude them from the regulatory base of assets of gas grid companies.
"Although hydrogen contains much less energy per volume than natural gas, the volume of hydrogen flow in the pipeline can be adjusted to largely compensate for the lower energy consumption of hydrogen transportation", the expert noted.
Also, an appropriate regulatory framework is needed to ensure that existing commercial pipeline investments are integrated into future regulated hydrogen networks, and that future access to pipelines and connections to the broader hydrogen network is not blocked by operators of privately funded hydrogen transport infrastructure, Poudineh added.
Currently, the specialized hydrogen transport infrastructure is aimed at connecting existing industrial clusters, as well as ports, cities and districts where pilot projects have been deployed or commercial hydrogen development facilities are located. In the long term, as the use of hydrogen expands in other industries, such as heat supply, transport and energy, the focus will be on connecting regional and national transport infrastructures, he noted.