Japan announced plans to revise its hydrogen strategy on Tuesday, with an ambitious goal to increase its annual supply to 12 million tonnes by 2040.
The move comes in response to growing competition in the global market for this fuel, with significant investments being made by the United States and Europe.
Japanese Prime Minister Fumio Kishida aims to accelerate the development of hydrogen supply chains and increase domestic regulation and support to reach this target.
Plans are already in place to increase Japan's hydrogen supply to approximately 3 million tonnes by 2030, up from the current 2 million tonnes used mainly by oil refiners.
By 2050, the country aims to expand this figure to 20 million tonnes, with hydrogen and ammonia as key contributors to Japan's goal of becoming carbon neutral.
Hydrogen has been recognized as a crucial alternative to fossil fuels in reducing carbon emissions.
Hydrogen has been a popular choice with major industries such as energy, steel and chemicals looking at ways to reduce their carbon footprint. However, the carbon footprint of hydrogen depends on the energy source used to produce it, specifically through electrolysis to split water.
Green hydrogen, a type of hydrogen produced using renewable electricity, is making significant strides, with zero emissions and the ability to power homes and businesses without relying on fossil fuels, making it an attractive renewable energy source.
The electrolysis process uses electricity to split water into hydrogen and oxygen, with the resultant hydrogen being stored in fuel cells and transported.
The benefits of green hydrogen are numerous, with zero emissions meaning it doesn't contribute to global warming or air pollution. Furthermore, its ability to be stored for long periods means it can act as a backup energy source when traditional energy sources may not be available.
The Japanese government has committed to invest $113 billion over the next 15 years in public and private sectors, aiming to promote hydrogen use and development to lead the setting of global standards for cleaner fuel.
Hydrogen will become an increasingly important component in the ongoing fight against climate change. Green hydrogen, in particular, offers an essential and sustainable option to help us imagine a cleaner tomorrow.
With countries like Japan committing to making the push for cleaner fuel, the future is looking brighter in our fight against global warming.
By Michael Kern for Oilprice.com
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