Sunday, May 22, 2022

Govt panel urges Centre to pursue blue hydrogen production from coal aggressively

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  • According to the policy document, the cost of Hydrogen produced from coal can be cheaper and less sensitive to imports 
  • An inter-ministerial task force has also been set up by the Ministry of Coal for the implementation of the recommendations of the expert committee on production of hydrogen from coal 

New Delhi: An expert committee formed by the government has urged the Centre to pursue the production of blue Hydrogen from coal aggressively, a policy document released on Friday showed. According to the ‘Roadmap for Coal to Hydrogen’ released by Minister for Coal Pralhad Joshi, “The committee has submitted its report wherein it has opined that hydrogen production from domestic coal should be aggressively pursued in our overall hydrogen ecosystem and has suggested to set up a couple of semi-commercial/demonstration gasification units for conversion of coal to Hydrogen, integrating with CCUS units, so that blue hydrogen is produced which is more acceptable.”

Coal is an important source for making hydrogen (Brown Hydrogen), apart from Natural Gas (Grey hydrogen) and renewable energy (Green Hydrogen). Almost 100 percent of Hydrogen produced in India comes through natural gas. Globally, 73 MT hydrogen is used for refining, ammonia-making and other pure use and about 42 MT is used for Methanol, steel-making and other mixed uses.

Cost of Hydrogen produced from coal can be cheaper

According to the policy document, the cost of Hydrogen produced from coal can be cheaper and less sensitive to imports, but production of hydrogen from coal has challenges in terms of high emissions, where Carbon Capture, Utilisation and Storage (CCUS) will play an important role.

In accordance with the announcement made by Prime Minister Narendra Modi, the Ministry of Coal had prepared a mission document for 100 MT coal gasification by 2030 and had constituted an expert committee to prepare a ‘Roadmap for Coal to Hydrogen,’ which was released on Friday.

An inter-ministerial task force has also been set up by the Ministry of Coal for the implementation of the recommendations of the expert committee, the policy document said.

Govt allows 50% revenue sharing for coal gasification

Launching the document, Joshi said that the Ministry of Coal has allowed concession of 50 percent in revenue share for coal gasification. Addressing an investors’ meet in Mumbai, Joshi also said that manufacturing Hydrogen from coal will help India become energy independent.

Minister of State (MoS) for Coal Raosaheb Patil Danve said, “Coal Gasification is the need of the hour and a step towards sustainable future.” Danve added that the government aims to achieve gasification of 100 million tonnes of coal by 2030. “This will generate jobs in both technical and non-technical sectors,” he added.

Coal gasification is considered as a cleaner option compared to burning of coal. Gasification facilitates utilisation of the chemical properties of coal.

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