Transitioning Safely with Hydrogen
Updated: Jan 27
Within our communities and workplaces we have been hearing more and more dialogue regarding the global need to pull together and deliver new solutions and technologies to transition to lower carbon economies. A common theme in these discussions is wokforce skills. There is a clear need to ensure that we enable the tranisition of skills and jobs to ensure that a fair and just transition is achieved. At Coeus Energy we also believe that the transition should be safe for employers, employees and the general public. So let’s look at how we could do this and use hydrogen as an example.
Effective Hydrogen economies have the potential to help achieve the net zero ambitions of industries and governments. In order for the fuel to achieve its potential there needs to be a full acceptance of it by all stakeholders involved and a large influencing factor here is whether or not it can be accepted as, safe.
So what is percieved as a safe fuel by the public in the UK for example? Many would argue that the same level of confidence in using petrol as a fuel is required before the general public would fully accept hydrogen gas as a safe fuel. But here’s the thing. Why do we think petrol from a petrol station is safe? Is it because we are aware of all the safety measures in place to prevent an accident when we refuel our cars? Is it because most of us have never known any alternatives to petrol as a fuel for our cars? Do we just accept the fuel as part of our lives? There are lots of reasons why using petrol and diesel in cars and other means of transport are accepted by the public and a commitment to educating ourselves as to how alternatives can also be used is needed for the net zero journey. Interestingly, the Orkney Islands in Scotland are already taking their first steps towards this engagement as they develop a hydrogen fuelled ferry, powered with locally developed green hydrogen. A great opportunity for us to learn from their experience.
Hydrogen gas is also being considered as an opportunity to reduce carbon footprints more widely in industrial processes like manufacturing where it can be used to reduce the carbon footprint of steel manufacturing or agricultural fertiliser production. The utilisation of hydrogen in these processes may represent a change for some employers and industries and that change requires effective management, part of which should be effective workforce engagement and education. Hydrogen has been successfully used as a fuel in industrial processes for many years and that knowleged can be effectively transferred to employers and employees via effective training programs.
In short, in the context of achieveing net zero, we need to understand the new fuels we want to use as societies and industries. Part of this understanding needs to be how to utilise them safely and closing the knowledge gaps that exist.
Coeus Energy was established in 2020 to help Inspire, Inform and Enable the Energy Transition. Contact us to see how we can help you with your hydrogen training requirements. www.coeus-energy.com