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Prospective Roles for Green Hydrogen as Part of Ireland's Decarbonisation Strategy


In recent decades, governments and society have been making increasing efforts to address and mitigate climate change by reducing emissions and decarbonising energy generation. Ireland has invested greatly in renewable electricity, installing 4 GW of wind capacity since 2002, and has set assertive energy targets, such as the aim to reduce overall emissions by 51% by 2030. Nonetheless, considerable acceleration is needed in the decarbonisation of the country’s energy sector. This paper investigates the potential role hydrogen can play in Ireland’s energy transition, proposing hydrogen as an energy vector and storage medium that may help the country achieve its targets and reduce greenhouse gas emissions. Through literature review, research and from industry insights, the current state of the Irish energy sector is analysed, and recommendations are made as to how, where and when hydrogen can be integrated into the decarbonisation of Ireland’s electricity, heating and transport. It is concluded that; with significant effort from the government, policymakers, industry and organisations; the effective deployment of hydrogen technologies in Ireland could avoid up to 6.1 MtCO2eq of emissions annually, reflecting a trend observed in many other developed countries in which hydrogen plays an important part in the path to a low-carbon future. Prospective roles for hydrogen in Ireland include renewable energy storage and grid balancing through the deployment of Power-to-Gas systems, a replacement for fossil natural gas in the gas grid for backup electricity production as well as industry and heating requirements, and the use of hydrogen as a fuel for heavy transport.

Related subjects: Policy & Socio-Economics
Countries: Ireland

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