Publication Detail

"Introduction to a Future Hydrogen Infrastructure" chapter in Transition to Renewable Energy Systems



Sustainable Transportation Energy Pathways (STEPS)

Hydrogen has been proposed as a future energy carrier to address environmental and energy security issues posed by current fuels. Hydrogen can be used efficiently and cleanly in diverse end-use applications, including transportation, heating, and power. Hydrogen can be made with zero or near-zero emissions from widely available resources, including renewables (biomass, solar, wind, hydropower, and geothermal), fossil fuels (natural gas or coal with carbon capture and sequestration), and nuclear energy. In principle, it should be possible to produce and use hydrogen fuel with near-zero lifecycle emissions of greenhouse gases and greatly reduced emissions of air pollutants while simultaneously diversifying away from the current dependence on petroleum. Moreover, hydrogen can help enable the use of vast intermittent renewable sources such as wind and solar. However, hydrogen energy faces significant technical, economic, infrastructure, and societal challenges before it could be implemented on a large scale. A key issue is building a new hydrogen fuel infrastructure. This chapter assesses the current and projected future status of hydrogen infrastructure technologies, including hydrogen production and delivery systems, and infrastructure design issues. Hydrogen is compared with other alternative transportation fuels in terms of cost and reductions in greenhouse gas emissions, and transition strategies for building hydrogen infrastructure are examined.

Suggested citation: Ogden, J. (2013) Introduction to a Future Hydrogen Infrastructure, in Transition to Renewable Energy Systems (eds D. Stolten and V. Scherer), Wiley-VCH Verlag GmbH & Co. KGaA, Weinheim, Germany. doi: 10.1002/9783527673872.ch38