Policy must pave the path for a green-hydrogen economy in India

On June 24, Reliance Industries announced plans to build a giga-factory to manufacture modular (high-efficiency, low capital cost) electrolysers, which would be used to produce green hydrogen. This is part of its commitment to invest $10 billion in new energy businesses.

In March, Adani Enterprises declared a collaboration with Italian conglomerate Maire Tecnimont, to develop green hydrogen projects in India. ACME, another Indian company, has commissioned a plant in Rajasthan to produce green hydrogen and green ammonia with plans for a larger facility in Oman. Indian enterprise is edging towards the next frontier of the energy transition. Indian policy should support with clearer pathways to build a green hydrogen economy.

CEEW estimates hydrogen demand in India to reach 1 million tonnes by 2030, a $44 billion investment opportunity. IEA estimates that global demand would be 200 MT by then. India could produce green hydrogen (leveraging its low-cost renewables) for export markets. In February, the Centre announced plans to launch a National Hydrogen Energy Mission. Five priorities could pave the way forward.

First, research and development on green hydrogen will require collaborations. While dozens of countries have announced hydrogen programmes, most research is concentrated in advanced economies. Asia, which will have the maximum demand, is barely present in hydrogen-related research partnerships. Individually, countries will struggle to bring down the prices of electrolysers (which convert water into hydrogen, using renewable electricity).

Pooling resources can accelerate the process and test technologies in markets that will drive demand. India should consider sponsoring a Global Green Hydrogen Alliance, along with other leading hydrogen countries

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