04 Apr 2024, 13:13
Julian Wettengel

Southwestern German states concerned they will be left out in the cold on electrolyser support

Tagesspiegel Background

Several southern German states have called on the federal government to design state support rules for electrolysers in a way that includes their regions, reported Tagesspiegel Background. The states, which are located far away from the windy coast with large amounts of renewable electricity, need the electrolysers to produce green hydrogen. In a joint letter to the economy ministry, they argued that support schemes should not only focus on sites near large or regionally concentrated power generation units, and thus effectively exclude certain regions from funding.

The government mentioned in its update to the national hydrogen strategy that it aims to support those locations which are "conducive to the overall system" and is currently working out the details. It aims to consider "the economic viability of hydrogen production, and questions of sufficient availability for customers," which might exclude regions with less potential for generating wind power, or those which have only scattered or smaller businesses in need of hydrogen. A decision like that would harm medium-sized industrial companies that want to convert their processes to green hydrogen before they are connected to a corresponding network, wrote ministers from Baden-Württemberg, Hesse, North Rhine-Westphalia, Rhineland-Palatinate and Saarland in the letter.

In the fight against climate change, hydrogen made with renewable electricity is increasingly seen as a silver bullet for sectors with particularly stubborn emissions, such as heavy industry and aviation. While Germany is set to import large amounts of the hydrogen it needs, domestic production will generally be more economical in regions with good wind power conditions.

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