Offshore Wind and Hydrogen: Solving the Integration Challenge
As the Offshore Wind Champion, I am delighted to support this report which has been commissioned by OWIC as part of the Offshore Wind Sector Deal. It looks at the opportunities and challenges from integrating high levels of renewables on the electricity grid make a strong case for the synergies between offshore wind (OSW) and green hydrogen production. Offshore wind and hydrogen together form a compelling combination as part of a net zero economy for the UK, with the potential to make major contributions to jobs, economic growth and regional regeneration as well as attracting inward investment, alongside delivering the emission reductions needed to meet our commitment to Net Zero.
As demonstrated by the Future Energy Scenarios published in July 2020 and Progress Report by the CCC there will be more need for long term storage. With an increasing proportion of variable renewable power on the UK electricity system there will be more time when wind resource is available but capacity is not required on the grid. Combining zero carbon electrolytic hydrogen production – green hydrogen – with OSW provides effective use of capital assets and wind resource and a means of long term energy storage. This strengthens the business case for future renewables investment as we move beyond the current system of long term contracts for electricity supply.