The French group EDF has launched a hydrogen plan to develop three gigawatts of electrolytic hydrogen worldwide in order to further diversify its activities, the group announced on Wednesday April 13. EURACTIV France reports.
“Tomorrow, we will no longer consider electricity as a commodity but as a choice. Individual choice to give meaning to our consumption in order to control it, move towards this chosen sobriety, consider ourselves responsible for our own impact, on our scale, without giving up our well-being,” said EDF CEO Jean-Bernard. Lévy announcing the move.
The company has started to step up its renewable energy production activities as part of the path towards clean, decarbonized and CO2-free electricity.
The goal of the hydrogen plan is to develop three gigawatts of electrolytic hydrogen projects worldwide by 2030 that would be used primarily by the industry and transportation sectors.
This will require 2 to 3 billion euros of investments “co-financed within the framework of industrial partnerships and benefiting from national and European support mechanisms”, added EDF.
The group will also rely on its subsidiary Hynamics, which specializes in the production of electrolytic hydrogen.
Save 3 million tonnes of CO2
The water electrolysis process uses renewable or nuclear electricity to produce hydrogen.
“We are targeting carbon-free hydrogen, which will be the vector for achieving carbon neutrality for the most difficult to decarbonize uses,” said Alexandre Perra, EDF’s executive director in charge of innovation, responsibility for and strategy, during a press conference. conference.
“These 3 GW will allow us to produce 450,000 tonnes of hydrogen each year and save three million tonnes of carbon,” he added.
Hydrogen production is responsible for 11.5 million tonnes of CO2 emissions in France, or around 3% of the country’s emissions. Producing green hydrogen is therefore a national but also global issue since almost all of the 80 million tonnes of hydrogen produced in the world come from fossil fuels, specifies EDF.
“Decarbonized hydrogen is an essential lever to reduce our dependence on fossil fuels in addition to the direct electrification of uses,” Lévy said in a statement.
“With this ambitious plan and by capitalizing on its expertise and know-how, the EDF group intends to contribute to the emergence of a strong and innovative European hydrogen sector”, he added.
EDF’s hydrogen plan is part of the French low-carbon hydrogen strategy launched by the government in September 2020, which provides for the installation of 6.5 gigawatts of carbon-free hydrogen production capacity by electrolysis.
[Edited by Benjamin Fox]