Govt planning to blend 15 per cent green hydrogen with piped natural gas
- The government is planning to blend 15 per cent green hydrogen with piped natural gas (PNG) for domestic, commercial and industrial consumption.
- The move is in line with India’s ambitious target of reducing greenhouse emissions and becoming carbon neutral by 2070.
- This initiative will be part of the government’s National Hydrogen Energy Mission aimed at generating hydrogen from green power sources.
- Hydrogen is the lightest element.
- It is the simplest and smallest element in the periodic table. No matter how it is produced, it ends up with the same carbon-free molecule.
- However, the pathways to produce it are very diverse, and so are the emissions of greenhouse gases like carbon dioxide (CO2) and methane (CH4).
- At standard conditions, hydrogen is a gas of diatomic molecules having the formula H2.
- It is colourless, odourless, tasteless, non-toxic, and highly combustible.
- Hydrogen is the most abundant chemical substance in the universe, constituting roughly 75% of all normal matter.
- Hydrogen fuel is a zero-emission fuel burned with oxygen. It can be used in fuel cells or internal combustion engines. It is also used as a fuel for spacecraft propulsion.
Different Types of Hydrogen
- Green hydrogen: It is defined as hydrogen produced by splitting water into hydrogen and oxygen using renewable electricity.
- This is a very different pathway compared to both grey and blue.
- Grey hydrogen: It is traditionally produced from methane (CH4), split with steam into CO2 – the main culprit for climate change – and H2, hydrogen.
- Grey hydrogen has increasingly been produced also from coal, with significantly higher CO2 emissions per unit of hydrogen produced, so much that is often called brown or black hydrogen instead of grey.
- It is produced at an industrial scale today, with associated emissions comparable to the combined emissions of the UK and Indonesia.
- It has no energy transition value, quite the opposite.
- Blue hydrogen
- It follows the same process as grey, with the additional technologies necessary to capture the CO2 produced when hydrogen is split from methane (or from coal) and store for the long term.
- It is not one colour but rather a very broad gradation, as not 100% of the CO2 produced can be captured, and not all means of storing it are equally effective in the long term.
- The main point is that by capturing a large part of the CO2 , the climate impact of hydrogen production can be reduced significantly.