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    US aims to lower hydrogen energy costs

Summary

The so-called Hydrogen Shot programme seeks 80% reduction in hydrogen costs.

by: Daniel Graeber

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US aims to lower hydrogen energy costs

The US Energy Department said June 7 it had set a goal of procuring ways to cut the cost of hydrogen as an energy source by 80% over the next decade.

Hydrogen produced from renewable resources costs around $5/kg, according to federal estimates. Through the so-called Hydrogen Shot programme, the government said it was looking for ways to cut that to $1/kg in one decade.

Jennifer Granholm, the US energy secretary, said the program is part of an “all-hands-on-deck” call for innovative solutions to move further along the pathway toward a clean energy future. As part of a broader initiative, dubbed Energy Earthshots, the secretary said hydrogen development was a good initial step.

“Clean hydrogen is a game changer,” she said. “It will help decarbonise high-polluting heavy-duty and industrial sectors, while delivering good-paying clean energy jobs and realising a net-zero economy by 2050.”

Last week, a group of California lawmakers called on legislative leaders to increase funding by $300mn in the state budget and allocate more revenue from a clean transportation programme in the state to boost hydrogen vehicle fuelling infrastructure.

In April, San Diego Gas & Electric, a subsidiary of Sempra Energy, said it was making good on its promise to reach corporate-wide net-zero greenhouse gas emissions by 2045 with the development of two hydrogen pilot projects.

The US Energy Department this year has already awarded more than $6mn to eight universities to research hydrogen as a clean-burning fuel.

The department June 7 issued a request for information for demonstrations of “viable” hydrogen projects that can lower costs, cut emissions and create jobs. Submissions are due July 7.