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Eco house with hydrogen heating technology. [Image credit: emergingrisks.co.uk]

Another green energy pipe dream bites the dust, before trials have even started? Massive cost compared to other options is just one of the stumbling blocks. Anything more expensive than electricity seems pointless anyway.
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Lord Callanan’s comments come as the British government continues to invest millions of pounds in H2 heating trials, says the Telegraph (via Recharge News).

“If I’m being honest, the idea that we could produce enough hydrogen at reasonable cost to displace mains gas is pretty much impossible,” said Lord Callanan, parliamentary under-secretary of state for climate change & corporate responsibility at the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy.

The UK government is currently investing millions of pounds in studies on hydrogen heating, with £25m ($34m) ploughed into the Hy4Heat programme; a pilot scheme in Scotland to heat 300 homes with 100% hydrogen via the existing gas grid due to take place in 2023, backed by up to £18m of grants from the industry regulator Ofgem; and plans to heat a whole town with H2 by 2030.

The UK national hydrogen strategy, unveiled in August, also includes a public consultation on “enabling, or requiring, new natural gas boilers to be easily convertible to use hydrogen (’hydrogen-ready’) by 2026″.

“Hydrogen has the potential to play a key role in decarbonising heat in buildings in the UK,” the strategy states. “We are rapidly delivering major studies and testing work to understand the feasibility of using hydrogen for heating, to inform broader strategic decisions in 2026 on heat decarbonisation.”

The UK’s five gas distributors are lobbying hard to replace the methane in their grids with pure hydrogen, with their Gas Goes Green programme declaring: “We’re creating the world’s first zero carbon gas grid by speeding up the switch from natural gas to hydrogen for the 85% of UK households connected to the gas grid.”

But they may be fighting a losing battle. Electric heat pumps are six times more efficient, meaning that a boiler burning green hydrogen would require six times as much renewable energy as a heat pump to produce the same amount of heat, making it an extremely expensive proposition.

Full article here.

via Tallbloke’s Talkshop

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October 6, 2021