Indian companies have engaged to commit billions of dollars to green hydrogen projects, although experts warn that the technology is still very new and its commercial viability unproven.
Green hydrogen is produced by splitting water into hydrogen and oxygen, using renewable energy such as solar power. When the fuel is burnt, it emits no exhaust, only water. Environmentalists profess it can help decarbonize heavy industries like oil refining, and fertilizers, and help cut emissions globally.
“At this point, the technology is not mature or cheap enough to be used widely,” said – Amit Bhandari, senior fellow, energy, and investment at Gateway House.
The green hydrogen industry is still in its early years to study the technology and costs will take a minimum of five years for results, Bhandari said.
“Ten years ago, if you had asked me if solar energy is viable, I would have said ‘no,’ even though solar power potential was known and technology was available. It took off only when the cost became comparable to traditional energy sources over a long period of time,” added Bhandari.
India’s current renewables account for 40% of total installed capacity and are the world’s 3rd largest crude oil importer after China and the U.S.
India’s government last year announced a national green hydrogen policy producing 5 million tons of fuel annually by 2030.
“Two important resources are required to become a large global player: water and cheap power. “India has a large coastline with access to seawater and ample sunlight,” said the chairman of Celeris Technologies, Venkat Sumantran.