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India launches ambitious national green hydrogen mission for sustainable future

August 11, 2023 10:36 am

India launches ambitious national green hydrogen mission for sustainable future

Pioneering Effort Aims to Transform India into a Global Hub for Green Hydrogen Production and Innovation
The Union Minister overseeing New & Renewable Energy and Power has communicated that the generation of Green Hydrogen is achievable through the electrolysis of water using renewable electricity, as well as from biomass through thermochemical and biochemical pathways. Presently, there exists limited production of Hydrogen via renewable sources within the country. Numerous entities have disclosed intentions to establish facilities for Green Hydrogen and Green Ammonia production in India. Nonetheless, these initiatives remain in their preliminary stages.

The Minister has underscored that the primary constituents impacting the cost of Green Hydrogen production are the expenses associated with electrolysers and the renewable energy input. Additional elements contributing to the overall cost of Green Hydrogen for specific applications encompass capital costs, water supply and treatment, storage and distribution, conversion of hydrogen to suitable derivatives, and the establishment of enabling infrastructure. The Minister elucidated how the National Green Hydrogen Mission is geared towards implementing measures aimed at reducing costs across these dimensions.

On January 4th, 2023, the Union Cabinet sanctioned the National Green Hydrogen Mission with a budgetary allocation of ₹19,744 crore. The overarching objective of this Mission is to position India as a global center for the manufacturing, utilisation, and export of Green Hydrogen and its derivatives. The following components have been outlined as integral to the Mission:

i. Stimulating demand through both exports and domestic utilisation;

ii. The Strategic Interventions for Green Hydrogen Transition (SIGHT) program, a substantial financial initiative with a budget of ₹17,490 crore. This program incorporates two distinct financial incentive mechanisms, directed towards supporting domestic electrolyzer manufacturing and Green Hydrogen production;

iii. Pilot projects encompassing green steel, mobility, shipping, decentralised energy applications, hydrogen production from biomass, hydrogen storage, among others;

iv. The development of Green Hydrogen Hubs;

v. Support for infrastructure expansion;

vi. Establishment of a robust regulatory and standards framework;

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vii. A dedicated Research & Development endeavor;

viii. A skill enhancement program;

ix. Public awareness and outreach initiatives.

It’s important to note that the Mission does not include provisions for incentivising the consumption of Green Hydrogen or its derivatives.

The Mission is anticipated to foster the establishment of 5 MMT (Million Metric Tonne) Green Hydrogen production capacities annually by 2030, thereby contributing to a decrease in reliance on fossil fuel imports. The successful attainment of Mission objectives is projected to curtail cumulative fossil fuel imports worth ₹1 lakh crore by 2030. This is expected to leverage an aggregate investment of over ₹8 lakh crore and engender the generation of more than 6 lakh jobs. Approximately 50 MMT per annum of CO2 emissions are projected to be mitigated through the production and utilisation of the targeted volume of Green Hydrogen.

The overarching aim of the Mission is to advance and escalate Green Hydrogen production technology to make it both economical and widely accessible.

The Minister further conveyed that additional measures are being undertaken by the Government to position India as a global hub for the manufacture, utilization, and export of Green Hydrogen. These measures include, among others:

• Granting a 25-year waiver of inter-state transmission charges to Green Hydrogen and Green Ammonia producers for projects commissioned before December 31st, 2030.

• The Electricity (Promoting Renewable Energy through Green Energy Open Access) Rules, 2022, issued in June 2022, have outlined provisions to facilitate the supply of renewable energy through Open Access for the purpose of Green Hydrogen production.

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