The UK handed over the energy “jackpot” – Scotland’s billions export gold mine

The UK is set for an energy surge, with Scotland’s green hydrogen plans set to be worth £25 billion a year in exports alone by 2045. While the UK is looking for ways to reach its legally binding commitment to net zero carbon emissions by 2050 , while also ensuring energy security, many have pointed to hydrogen as the answer. The gas – which can be separated from the water by electrolysis – can be used for cooking and heating and when burned produces only water as a by-product, rather than a fossil fuel. According to Angus Robertson, SNP MSP at Edinburgh Central and Minister for Foreign Affairs and Culture, Scotland could soon lead the way in hydrogen development.

Scotland has historically been endowed with ample reserves of energy in the form of fossil fuels in the North Sea and is the largest producer of oil and the second largest producer of gas in Europe.

But as the world shifts away from dirty fossil fuels, the region is also developing renewable energy potential, which Mr. Robertson notes is enough to “satisfy our domestic and export requirements as well.”

Given the huge potential of offshore wind, Scotland recently launched the world’s largest licensing round for floating offshore wind capacity with a potential of 27.6 gigawatts (GW).

Writing in the Edinburgh Evening News, he wrote: “The ScotWind project opens up exciting prospects to make Scotland a world leader in the production of hydrogen, which can be used in fuel cells to generate electricity or to generate power and heat buildings.”

Experts have hailed hydrogen’s vast potential in replacing natural gas in a number of sectors, including transportation, commercial, industrial, and residential, as well as being a portable source of energy.

Experts believe that once the hydrogen industry grows sufficiently, it can power cars, trucks, planes, ships, and pipe into homes in much the same way that conventional gas is used nowadays.

However, experts including Mei Chia, chief business officer of carbon capture at Honeywell sustainable technology solutions, have previously told that the road to getting there is long, and can be broken down into multiple stages leading to commercial and residential transport. . use.

Earlier this month, the Scottish government released the Hydrogen Action Plan which aims to achieve an ambitious 5GW of renewable, low-carbon hydrogen by 2030.

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The plan says: “Utilizing Scotland’s potential to become a major exporter of hydrogen is estimated to contribute between £5 billion and £25 billion annually by 2045 depending on production and exports.”

Robertson described hydrogen as the “renewable energy jackpot” in Scotland, adding that its clean energy potential is “so important that it could provide electricity and hydrogen to other countries.”

“Europe’s energy transition will involve significant hydrogen imports, and with Scotland only 700-750km from the coasts of the Netherlands and Germany, there are excellent opportunities for fast charging and lower transport costs than other locations.

“In addition to exporting hydrogen by ship, there is great potential for direct supply by pipeline from Scotland to the European continent.”

The Scottish government said it “aspires for Scotland to become a leading producer and exporter of hydrogen and hydrogen derivatives for use in the UK and Europe, with the first hydrogen delivered from Scotland to mainland Europe in mid-2020”.

Ms. Xia previously said that until 2030, hydrogen will basically only be used for industrial uses, after which it will start to switch to automobiles, residential heating, industrial heating and power generation.

She said: “The energy transition is only going to happen when you combine all the different levers that have to reduce CO2. That includes post-combustion capture in things like power plants, steel mills, cement plants, and it also involves clean hydrogen generation. Of all of blue-green hydrogen.

“We see blue hydrogen as a key enabler for creating the ecosystem that allows green hydrogen to expand. The hydrogen you have in transition pathways is based on the Hydrogen Council from now until 2025 – and will continue to be used in industrial settings, primarily in summary, in-process applications in heating.” industrial.

“From there you’ll slowly make that transition a focus when the hydrogen capacity is sufficient that it shifts to mobility and power generation. And that means cars, aviation, any number of those areas.”

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