The report, titled ‘A hydrogen vision for the UK’, includes comprehensive maps outlining the expansion of the country’s hydrogen infrastructure over the next three decades, from initial clusters centred on particular industries and pilot sites, to a fully integrated network serving industry, homes, businesses, power generation and some transport applications by 2050.
The report details how hydrogen can work in tandem with electrification to support the decarbonisation of the UK’s energy system and maintain the competitiveness of UK businesses.
The UK’s gas network operators have made five pledges to help make the vision a reality.
The report recommends that the government show the same commitment to hydrogen network infrastructure development as it has to hydrogen production, expedite the development of critical business models for transport and storage, make key policy decisions around blending and hydrogen-ready boilers, and ensure that the planned Future System Operator is equipped with the right tools and mandate to deliver its part in the hydrogen vision.
According to the report, hydrogen could provide between 20-35% of the UK’s energy demand by 2050, supporting the country’s climate and security goals.
James Earl, Director of Gas at the Energy Networks Association, said that gas network operators are ready to invest, innovate and deliver this vision for hydrogen’s role in the UK energy system, but they need certainty from the government to plan with confidence.
Earl added that the gas network members pledge to work collaboratively with the government, the regulator, businesses and the communities they serve to explore and deliver the significant benefits that hydrogen can have for the energy system, industry, consumers and the UK economy.