New Mexico Climate Activists Struggle To Reject Hydrogen Economy Bill – Does It Work?

Guest essay by Eric Worrall

Hydrogen, despite its serious shortcomings, is a convertible form of carbon-free energy, and therefore a serious threat to useless renewable energy sources.

Lawmakers Confused NM . Governor’s Clean Hydrogen Economic Plan

State lawmakers from both sides of the aisle voted to pass a proposed bill that aims to make the state a hydrogen energy hub. Governor Lujan Grisham is concerned that, without the bill, the state could miss its climate goals.

January 28, 2022 • Robert Nott, Santa Fe New Mexico

(TNS) – New Mexico lawmakers from both parties have blocked Governor Michelle Lujan Grisham’s controversial plan to build what she calls a clean hydrogen economy.

After nearly six hours of debate on Thursday, the Energy, Environment and Natural Resources Committee voted 6-4 to pass House Bill 4 – which aims to make the state a hub for hydrogen production by offer tax incentives to develop infrastructure to segregate energy sources. from natural gas.

The hearing is the bill’s first obstacle in legislative session. It’s unclear if it will get a second chance. Legislation that has been tabulated in a committee is rarely brought back for discussion or another vote.

While the governor’s hydrogen plan has received support from the oil and gas industry, it has faced stiff opposition from environmental groups and progressive Democrats, who argue that using natural gas will increase fossil fuel production and lead to additional greenhouse gas emissions during the climate crisis. .

Tom Solomon, a retired electrical engineer and co-ordinator of 350 New Mexico, a climate advocacy group, said he was pleased the bill was tabulated.

“I’d rather it been down-voted,” he said. “The discontinuance is the next best thing.”

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Hydrogen is produced commercially through the steam conversion of a fossil fuel, usually coal or natural gas. Fossil fuels can “burn” water, if you compress and heat it enough – the carbon in fossil fuels separates the oxygen from the water, leaving behind carbon monoxide, carbon dioxide, hydrogen, and a host of other by-products. .

Fossil fuel companies love this technology, because the obvious place to “separate” all the depleted CO2 and other worthless oil and gas fields.

Some green hydrogen proposals have an additional antagonistic green color, by suggesting Installing a carbon capture system should be postponedso a supposedly clean hydrogen plant releases all the CO2 released into the atmosphere, just like a regular fossil fuel plant – although I don’t know if this is a feature of the New York proposals. Mexican or not.

The Greens also cited a study this suggests a methane leak will more than cancel out any savings from CO sequestration.

How blue is hydrogen?

Robert W. Howard, Mark Z. Jacobson
First published: August 12, 2021

Hydrogen is often considered an important energy carrier in the future world of decarbonisation. Currently, most hydrogen is produced by steam conversion of methane in natural gas (“grey hydrogen”), with high carbon dioxide emissions. Increasingly, many are proposing to use carbon capture and storage to reduce these emissions, creating so-called “green hydrogen”, often promoted as low-emissions. We make the first attempt in a peer-reviewed paper to examine the lifecycle greenhouse gas emissions of blue hydrogen equivalent to those of carbon dioxide and methane yet to be released. on fire. Far from being low carbon, the greenhouse gas emissions from green hydrogen production are quite high, especially due to the release of runaway methane. For our default assumptions (3.5% methane emissions from natural gas and 20-year potential for global warming), total carbon dioxide equivalent emissions for hydrogen blue color is only 9%-12% less than gray hydrogen. While carbon dioxide emissions are lower, fugitive methane emissions are higher for blue hydrogen than for gray hydrogen due to the increasing use of natural gas to power carbon capture. Perhaps surprisingly, the greenhouse gas emissions of green hydrogen are 20% larger than burning natural gas or coal for heat and about 60% larger than burning diesel for heat, again. with our default assumptions. In a sensitivity analysis in which the proportion of methane emissions from natural gas was reduced to a low value of 1.54%, the greenhouse gas emissions from blue hydrogen were still larger than those from burning natural gas alone. simple and only 18%-25% lower than gray hydrogen. Our analysis assumes that captured carbon dioxide can be stored indefinitely, an optimistic and unproven assumption. Even so, even if true, the use of green hydrogen seems unlikely for climate reasons.

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In my opinion, the whole situation is a joke – a battle between supporters of a completely useless form of energy and a potentially useless form of energy.

Hydrogen is terribly dangerous compared to fossil fuels, when it leaks it will ignite or even explode in a variety of mixtures with air. The fire from the leak burned so hot it was completely invisible, so I expect to see a lot of people die if hydrogen is widely used. Compressed hydrogen is something you want in roughly the same amount of whatever you’re interested in.

I have personal experience with hydrogen. As a child, I couldn’t afford Helium, so I used a simple household chemical reaction to create a large amount of hydrogen to fill the party balloons. Balloons make a terrible explosion when ignited, or sometimes even when they have just exploded. Strictly an outdoor decoration. Some balloons explode while being filled, even the slightest spark or leak or friction with the surface of the balloon is enough. Sometimes they explode for no apparent reason.

But hydrogen has one important advantage over renewables – it’s replaceable.

As there is growing awareness of how useless and unreliable renewables are, slightly less useless “green” alternatives like natural gas to hydrogen are collecting. attention – and this worries renewable energy proponents really.

Here’s a scene where a group of college students explode a large balloon filled with hydrogen. The amount of hydrogen in a balloon is only a fraction of what is contained in the gas tank of a hydrogen-powered car.

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