What a week it has been in the world of saving, well, our world! From the global climate change protests of a bold new generation on Friday 20th September to some pointed and pertinent messages from Greta the Galvaniser across that weekend and, of course, the event that it was all building up to – last week’s UN Climate Action Summit in New York.
It couldn’t have been a more pointed week for environmental action. Fridays for Future demonstrations were also held in cities across the globe, from Montreal and Vancouver (Canada) to Rome and Venice (Italy) and Wellington (New Zealand). Such protests were also held in Finland, India, South Korea and Spain, and beyond.
We even saw another major step forward for hydrogen with the second Hydrogen Energy Ministerial Meeting in Tokyo, Japan, where more than 30 countries were represented as ministers and delegates responsible for the coordination of hydrogen energy policy within their respective countries met to discuss strategies for cooperation toward the development of hydrogen energy. The gathering saw the reaffirmation that hydrogen can be a key contributor to clean, safe and affordable energy for the future.
And we published a story last week that very rapidly caught the attention of thousands of readers around the world, with over 3,000 hits in just 36 hours. That story was of the first look at the fuel cell electric truck that will revolutionise the green hydrogen mobility ecosystem in Switzerland, a big reveal from Hyundai Hydrogen Mobility, the joint venture between Hyundai Motor Company and Swiss hydrogen company H2 Energy. The venture which will bring 1,600 of these heavy-duty Hyundai H2 Xcient fuel cell trucks to the market over the next five years.
There are many reasons that we could attribute to the success of such a story, but if we could pick one overriding message from this, it surely shows what an appetite there is not just for clean mobility but clean mobility powered by hydrogen. These are fantastic, if not formidable times for hydrogen mobility and this is a great demonstration of that.
Week’s like this underline why I’m so proud to be a part of H2 View, to launch and lead this platform, and to champion the cause of hydrogen energy. They’re why I was so proud to launch H2 View and see the first edition roll of the press last week. With H2 View, hydrogen has a new voice in the discussion around the clean energies transition, a voice that we believe has been lacking for some time.
“Week’s like this underline why I’m so proud to be a part of H2 View, to launch and lead this platform, and to champion the cause of hydrogen energy. With H2 View, hydrogen has a new voice in the discussion around the clean energies transition, a voice that we believe has been lacking for some time”
The need to raise awareness to hydrogen and its future role has never been stronger, particularly taken in the context of reports such as DNV GL’s latest, its Energy Transition Outlook 2019 study. According to its analysis, we’re simply not moving fast enough to secure the sustainable energy future we require.
Global energy-related emissions will only peak in 2025, and emissions will not fall sufficiently by 2050 to bring global warming to well below 2ºC, it says.
Even with the rapid changes in decarbonisation and energy intensity DNV GL forecasts, carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions are still projected to be at around half of today’s level in 2050. Extrapolating the trends, DNV GL’s Outlook points towards a 2.4ºC warming of the planet by the end of this century, over the pre-industrial average – a level considered dangerous by the IPCC and the world’s scientific community.
Unpacking this, DNV GL forecasts that the 1.5ºC carbon budget is exhausted in 2028; and humanity exceeds the 2ºC budget in 2049, with still-significant emissions by mid-century. The result is an overshoot in emissions above the 1.5-degree budget of some 770 gigatonnes of CO2 by 2050, and even higher towards 2100. Ultimately, DNV GL’s Outlook points towards a 2.4ºC warming of the planet by the end of this century and the damning words that, ‘the energy future we forecast is thus unequivocally not fast enough’.
In light of such conclusions, it’s clear that we need greater action, greater commitment and even greater momentum in our sustainable energy initiatives. This is why I am so proud to be a part of H2 View; why I am passionate about banging the hydrogen drum; why I can’t wait to attend the Energy Observer press conference and see it docked in London this Friday. To step on-board a groundbreaking new sea vessel that is doing more than its fair share to raise awareness and prove a technological point, will be a privilege indeed.
To put our knowledge of hydrogen and its markets to good use, and play some small part in championing the clean energies transition, is also a privilege and long may that continue. Let’s hope for many more progressive weeks such as these.