"Hydrogen power"

Hydrogen is an energy carrier rather than an energy source.

"Hydrogen power" is a misnomer as there is no naturally occuring hydrogen on earth, and any hydrogen that we use has to be generated using energy of some kind.

Currently, most hydrogen is generated using a fossil fuel (usually natural gas), although there is a potential for hydrogen to be generated from a renewable energy source.

So hydrogen has to be regarded as an energy carrier rather than as an energy source, akin to batteries. Whether to use batteries or hydrogen in any situation is a question of economics and weight.

Despite these limitations to the role of hydrogen, many individuals and groups are talking or acting as if hydrogen is a solution to the climate crisis. For example, the Metro-mayor of Merseyside makes repeated references to "hydrogen powered buses" as a major part of the city-region's climate plan - see https://www.liverpoolcityregion-ca.gov.uk/liverpool-city-region-launches-6-4m-hydrogen-bus-project/.

First published: Feb 2020
Last updated: 9 Feb 2020