Managing Future Security of Low Carbon Hydrogen Supply

CIEP, July 2022
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Understanding International Value Chain Developments and Market Structures regarding Security of Supply

In many forward-looking sketches of market developments and the energy transition, the assumption is always that the open international markets will persist, and relations will be harmonious, while it is by no means clear that these globalised markets and international relations as we knew them until recently will continue in the future. The course of the energy transition and the development of energy markets may thus be different in the context of an alternative world order. This is the context of the project ‘Hydrogen To Be’ (H2TB) concerning the geopolitics and geo-economics of hydrogen carrier imports and the impact on local economies and society in Northwest Europe. The H2TB project is commissioned by SmartPort. The Ministry of Economic Affairs and Climate through RVO commissioned CIEP to work on the Future Security of Supply of Hydrogen (carriers), which is both part of the H2TB-project and a stand-alone contribution.

The current tense geopolitical relations are a stark reminder that the development of imported hydrogen carrier value chains may have to take place in less harmonious international political and economic circumstances than anticipated in many studies. From these less than harmonious circumstances arose the idea to compare the eventful rise of the international oil and gas value chains with the potential growth of international hydrogen carrier value chains over time. For the latter we used insights from the Dynamic Market Theory on how value chains and markets may develop and previous CIEP-studies on security of supply. Based on these insights, lessons regarding security of future hydrogen carriers supply may be drawn.