H2 Or No H2
CSTEP’s HASH framework helps identify key sectors where hydrogen can have a significant impact
India is considering hydrogen’s application across several sectors. However, as the entire infrastructure around a hydrogen economy is relatively expensive today, a hierarchical approach is necessary to prioritise hydrogen usage across various sectors. This can help identify key sectors where hydrogen can have a significant impact while recognising areas where other alternatives may be more beneficial.
CSTEP’s Hydrogen Applications Segmentation and Hierarchy Framework (HASH) has been developed keeping in mind the advantages and shortcomings of hydrogen (both as a fuel and feedstock) to prioritise its use across different sectors. The framework uses a rational methodology to prioritise sectors that have an impact on reducing emissions using hydrogen.
HASH utilises multiple criteria to identify and rank sectors, from the most suitable application of hydrogen, which will be the major narrative around the hydrogen ecosystem in India, to the least significant application, which is less likely to be competitive in the market.
The framework provides valuable insights into key drivers of a hydrogen ecosystem in India, highlighting sectors that should be prioritised for investment. Based on the findings, it can be concluded that a hydrogen application as a feedstock — such as ammonia-based fertilisers, hydrogenation, desulphurisation, hydrocracking, and methanol synthesis — will be the primary driver of the hydrogen narrative in the country in the near future until a level of parity is reached with respect to cost. On the other hand, hydrogen-powered cars and other energy applications are less likely to contribute and should, therefore, receive comparatively less attention.