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Green Hydrogen

Green Hydrogen in the UK

An alternative fuel, powering a cleaner greener future.

The fastest way to decarbonise the UK is to transition from natural gas to renewable electricity as quickly as possible. However, not all industries are suitable to be electrified. Green hydrogen is key to displacing both natural gas in heavy industry and diesel fuel in large scale transport solutions making it vital to a decarbonised future UK fuel mix.

ScottishPower is at the forefront of green hydrogen development in the UK. We are making use of the UK Government’s Hydrogen Production Business Model funding and Net Zero Hydrogen Fund to begin delivering over 120MW of electrolyser capacity and leading the way for our future projects. The UK’s Hydrogen Strategy outlines ambition for up to 6GW of low carbon electrolytic (green) hydrogen by 2030.

What is green hydrogen?

Green hydrogen is the hydrogen gas produced using the process of electrolysis powered by renewable energy.

Water (H2O) is separated into its base elements (oxygen (O2) and hydrogen (H2)) using an electrolyser. This electrolyser is powered by ‘green’ energy generated by wind, solar, or other renewable sources leading to the badge of ‘green’ hydrogen and producing zero carbon emissions.

Leading with experience

In our drive to lead the UK in the development of green hydrogen, we are working closely with our parent company, Iberdrola, who have a pipeline of 50 green hydrogen projects across eight different countries. This allows us to carry out work backed by the experience and knowledge of our global colleagues who have a track record in successful delivery.

Our vision

"Green hydrogen is an important technology that will help make net zero a reality. Created from renewable energy, it can decarbonise emission intensive sectors of industry and heavy transport. We are already at the forefront of industrial scale hydrogen deployment and are building an expert team that’s providing real solutions for customers making their operations more sustainable for years to come."

Mark Bradley, Hydrogen Director

Why is green hydrogen needed in the UK?

The fastest way to reduce the impact of climate change and lower carbon emissions is to remove the use of fossil fuels in UK energy generation. The best way to do this is increase the use of locally sourced renewable electricity and reduce the volume of imported oil and gas.

Hydrogen is important to decarbonise industries where electrification is difficult or not possible. Carbon intensive industries such as distilleries, glass, ceramics, petrochemical and agriculture as well as heavy transport like shipping, aviation, trains, and HGVs are identified as industries where the use of green hydrogen could be massively beneficial.



Frequently asked questions

Hydrogen is an extremely versatile gas that can be used in many ways. We intend to use green hydrogen to decarbonise industries where electrification is difficult or not possible – e.g. distilleries, glass, ceramics, petrochemical and agriculture as well as heavy transport like shipping, aviation, trains, and HGVs.

Green hydrogen plants can be individually located or co-located with industry, and this can determine and impact the efficiency of the production process.

Where green hydrogen is individually located then power connection, water source, and hydrogen piping or delivery will be required to and from those separate locations.

Where co-located with a renewable energy source such as a windfarm or solar farm, like our Whitelee development, power cabling requirements are minimised, and the reliance on a grid connection is reduced. Hydrogen piping or delivery will be required to and from those separate locations.

Plants can also be co-located at the customer’s site, where hydrogen is produced on their land removing the need for long external pipelines or truck deliveries of hydrogen. It only requires power (co-located or not) and water resources.

In the future we plan for optimum, full process, co-located facilities where the energy generation, hydrogen production, and hydrogen consumption by the customer will all be on the same site making the process the most efficient and sustainable.

Our green hydrogen sites are chosen based on their location in relation to potential customers, availability of water, and access to renewable energy.

In this process there is the possibility to use wastewater, sea water, or fresh water to create green hydrogen.

However, each water type requires different treatment for it to be used in an electrolyser making the production cost vary in price. Examples of water treatment include cleaning wastewater and removing the salt from sea water.

Green hydrogen production is an expanding industry and has the potential to be a key factor in reducing carbon emissions across the UK.

Green hydrogen production has the capability to significantly reduce the carbon emissions of carbon heavy business sectors and is a worthwhile investment to meet UK renewable energy targets.

In the future, as the popularity of green hydrogen production grows, and the cost of technical equipment, like electrolysers, falls, the availability of green hydrogen production will increase, allowing us to decarbonise more industries across the United Kingdom.

There is an opportunity to co-locate renewable energy sources (such as wind and solar farms) with green hydrogen production on the customer’s grounds. This would reduce the transportation of power and hydrogen, further reducing the cost and making the process more efficient and sustainable.

Our green hydrogen is produced using water electrolysis powered by renewable energy. Our hydrogen plants that are co-located with our renewable assets, like solar arrays and windfarms, will draw most of their power directly from these sources. Similarly, our hydrogen plants that are not co-located can access renewable electricity through the electricity network. The Governments Low Carbon Hydrogen Standard (LCHS) requires us to correlate hydrogen production with real time renewable energy output from our portfolio, ensuring green production of hydrogen.

But what if the sun doesn’t shine and the wind doesn’t blow?

ScottishPower’s renewable portfolio spans the whole of the UK, so whilst the local windfarm or solar array may not always be generating, our range of locations throughout the country means we are nearly always supplying the grid with enough renewable energy to power our hydrogen projects.

This approach means that we are producing hydrogen all-year round for our customers that meets the UK’s Low Carbon Hydrogen Standard, so the carbon emissions from our hydrogen production plant will be close to zero.

The traditional production of hydrogen contributes to 2% of global carbon emissions. With the introduction of green hydrogen, there is the potential to significantly reduce pollution and emissions released from the hydrogen production industry.

In the green hydrogen production and consumption process, the only products made are hydrogen, oxygen, and residual water as a byproduct. Zero carbon emissions.

Green hydrogen is important to replace the use of fossil fuels in UK industries that are hard to electrify. Where this is possible, green hydrogen could be the sustainable fuel of the future, significantly reducing the footprint of carbon heavy industries and helping the UK reach Net Zero by 2050.

Green hydrogen is produced when an electrolyser is powered by renewable energy sources, splitting water into hydrogen and oxygen and creating zero carbon emissions.

Blue hydrogen is created when natural gas (CH4) is piped into a steam reformer in order to separate the carbon from the hydrogen. Most of the carbon is captured however it is impossible to capture 100% of the emissions.

Grey hydrogen follows the same process as blue hydrogen however the separated carbon is not captured and is released into the atmosphere as carbon dioxide.

Green hydrogen news

Work with us. Become part of our supply chain.

Through focusing our effort on key industries we are keen to engage with new customers and suppliers to strengthen our supply chain and grow the green hydrogen industry.

Get in touch with our team now, and let’s work together to find your green hydrogen solution.

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