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Industrial decarbonization via hydrogen: A critical and systematic review of developments, socio-technical systems and policy options

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  • Steve Griffiths, Khalifa University of Science and Technology
  • ,
  • Benjamin K. Sovacool
  • Jinsoo Kim, Hanyang University
  • ,
  • Morgan Bazilian, Colorado School of Mines
  • ,
  • Joao M. Uratani, Khalifa University of Science and Technology

Industrial decarbonization is a daunting challenge given the relative lack of low-carbon options available for “hard to decarbonize” industries such as iron and steel, cement, and chemicals. Hydrogen, however, offers one potential solution to this dilemma given that is an abundant and energy dense fuel capable of not just meeting industrial energy requirements, but also providing long-duration energy storage. Despite the abundance and potential of hydrogen, isolating it and utilizing it for industrial decarbonization remains logistically challenging and is, in many cases, expensive. Industrial utilization of hydrogen is currently dominated by oil refining and chemical production with nearly all of the hydrogen used in these applications coming from fossil fuels. The generation of low-carbon or zero-carbon hydrogen for industrial applications requires new modes of hydrogen production that either intrinsically produce no carbon emissions or are combined with carbon capture technologies. This review takes a sociotechnical perspective to examine the full range of industries and industrial processes for which hydrogen can support decarbonization and the technical, economic, social and political factors that will impact hydrogen adoption.

Original languageEnglish
Article number102208
JournalEnergy Research and Social Science
Publication statusPublished - Oct 2021

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2021 Elsevier Ltd

    Research areas

  • Anthropogenic emissions, Climate change, Climate mitigation, Hydrogen, Industrial decarbonization

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