Hydrogen leakage could add to atmospheric methane

Researchers have identified risks associated with hydrogen releases, noting that it may have knock-on impacts on atmospheric methane interactions.

COP 27 saw the signing of a Joint Statement on Green Hydrogen and Green Shipping calling for the rapid adoption of green hydrogen-based fuels, but there may be a downside to consider.

The Joint Statement was facilitated by Climate Change ‘High-Level Champions’ – UN nominees that connect governmental work with the voluntary and collaborative initiatives taken by cities, regions, businesses and investors – and non-profit energy organisation, RMI. It was signed by, among others, MAN Energy Solutions, the Aspen Institute, the Global Maritime Forum’s Getting to Zero Coalition, the Green Hydrogen Catapult, InterContinental Energy, and A.P. Moller - Maersk.

However, research from Princeton University and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Association and published in Nature Communications calls the potential of hydrogen as a clean fuel into question. The hydroxyl radical (OH) present in the atmosphere reacts with hydrogen gas, potentially limiting its availability for breaking down methane which would then be present in the atmosphere for longer extending its warming impacts.

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