Norway Energy Opportunities Hydrogen Value Chain
Renewable energy and clean hydrogen are critical components needed to meet the Paris Agreement’s goals to decarbonize the global energy grids. To meet the targets, hydrogen would need to meet around 15% of world’s energy demand by 2050. To meet the targets of decarbonization by 2050, however, the existing industrial production of hydrogen must be decarbonized. Also, significant quantities of low-carbon hydrogen and its derivatives are needed in industries, such as energy carriers, shipping and aviation, and energy storage.
For Europe, including Norway, international collaboration will play an important role in establishing a functioning green energy market that stimulates the increased use of clean hydrogen. As Norway seeks to build out the value chain, input will be needed in multiple segments from foreign investors.
The fastest developing applications of hydrogen in Norway seem to be in the maritime and transportation sectors. For instance, Norway has a robust hydropower supply and virtually emission-free heating, therefore, typical applications for hydrogen such as an energy storage unit for variable renewable energy are less relevant.
The Norwegian government is supporting a broad array of zero-emission solutions in the transport sector, including hydrogen. Since Norway has no vehicle production, its primary contribution to the hydrogen transport sector will be through pilot and demonstration projects. As the technology gradually matures, Norway can also help to accelerate hydrogen’s introduction and growth to the international market, something that the government supports through its Zero Emissions Fund for commercial transport. This is an opportunity for U.S. companies with relevant Norway relationships.
The transport and maritime industries are important and fast-developing markets for Norway’s hydrogen value chain, as outlined in the following:
- Pipeline transport of compressed hydrogen gas is generally seen as the most cost-effective way of transporting large volumes over long distances. This can be done in pure form or blended into natural gas in gas pipelines.Further expansion of the hydrogen infrastructure network in Norway can provide great opportunity and can be supported through research and collaboration from abroad.
- Norway has target figures and plans for all new cars, light vans, and urban buses to be zero-emission vehicles by 2025. By 2030, goods distribution in the biggest urban centers must be virtually zero emission and by 2050, transport must be virtually zero-emission or climate neutral.
- With the Norwegian government announcing that all new car ferries and high-speed ferries from 2023 and 2025, respectively, will be required to be zero emission, hydrogen is poised to be a part of the energy mix for ferries.In the short term, by 2025, the Norway plans to establish five hydrogen hubs for maritime transport. There is significant research into hydrogen fuel cells, tanks, and power cells in Norway, with significant opportunities for U.S. companies for collaboration and expansion of the hydrogen value chain.
The U.S. and Norwegian governments both have the ambition to integrate hydrogen into their long-term green energy transition through public funding and research. Developing hydrogen technology is an expensive and high-risk endeavor, and its implementation relies to a large extent on public funding, for which both the U.S. and Norway have shown their support. U.S. department of Energy hopes to reduce the cost of clean hydrogen production to $1 per kilogram within the decade, called The Hydrogen Shot. That cost level will fuel Trans-Atlantic investments and trade.
Opportunities for U.S. firms in Norway’s hydrogen sector include pipeline infrastructure and technologies, innovative hydrogen and other clean technologies for the maritime and automotive sector, energy storage infrastructure, and more.
Market intelligence author, Erik Bohn. For more information on opportunities, contact Heming Bjorna at the U.S. Commercial Service in Norway.