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The prevailing stance on hydrogen adoption across nations aligns with Irish climate minister Eamon Ryan’s statement in the national hydrogen strategy document. Ryan emphasizes the priority of direct electrification over hydrogen technologies if it yields superior outcomes. Thus, it ensures efficiency guides decision-making.

This shift diminishes the support for hydrogen use in vehicles and residential heating. Skeptical of these as mainstream solutions, Western governments curtail investments in such sectors. They shift focus towards cleaner alternatives. Rather than endorsing hydrogen for cars and boilers, they pivot towards promoting clean hydrogen to grey hydrogen in fertilizer and chemical production, oil refining, and decarbonizing steel and long-haul transportation.

The EU’s Renewable Energy Directive (RED III) requires industries to source a significant portion of hydrogen from renewable sources. By 2030, sectors like ammonia, chemicals, oil refining, and steel must secure at least 42% of their hydrogen from renewables, rising to 60% by 2035. Moreover, RED III targets 1% of transport fuel to be Renewable Fuel of Non-Biological Origin (RFNBO) by 2030. This will signal a clear push for green hydrogen and its derivatives.

Additional EU directives further fortify the green hydrogen landscape. The Alternative Fuels Infrastructure Regulation (AFIR) requires member states to establish hydrogen filling stations along major routes, fostering hydrogen accessibility. FuelEU imposes emission reduction targets for ships navigating EU waters, encouraging the use of RFNBOs. Vessels can count emissions savings from these fuels until 2033, promoting their adoption.

Lastly, the ReFuelEU Aviation directive demands the gradual incorporation of synthetic kerosene from green hydrogen into aviation fuel. This will rise to a 35% share by 2050. These directives create a robust market for green hydrogen and derivatives, leaving minimal space for blue hydrogen, thus shaping a transformative landscape for hydrogen usage in Europe.

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