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Why everyone’s talking about SA as a green hydrogen hub – and what we need to get there

The hype around green energy appears to be gaining traction globally with the World Economic Forum in November 2020 naming green hydrogen as one of the top 10 emerging technologies. South Africa is similarly at a point where it is making a shift to innovative renewable energy technology, developing storage solutions for conventional renewable energy such as wind and solar power generation facilities, and striving to meet its commitments made under the Paris Agreement.

With the world scrambling for ways to revitalize economies in a post pandemic world, this relatively unknown unexplored fuel could be the answer to not just dramatically cut the country’s carbon emissions, but also contribute to economic profitability through export.

But while research shows that South Africa has the competitive advantage ingredients to become a green hydrogen production leader, there are several legislative and natural limitations that could slow progress if they aren’t addressed.

“It is clear that South Africa is well positioned to grow the green hydrogen and fuel cell sector as well as to create the platform for a green hydrogen export economy. In order to produce green hydrogen at scale, it is evident that South African policymakers need to support a far higher allocation of renewable energy power generation development. The other critical consideration is water availability. With the known shortages of water in South Africa, the requirements of achieving sustainable water resources for communities and the environment would likely be prioritised over the use of such water for green hydrogen production,” says Jay Govender Projects & Energy Sector Head at Cliffe Dekker Hofmeyr.

Legal experts from leading law firm, Cliffe Dekker Hofmeyr’s Energy sector have put together an article which provides insight into South Africa’s Green Energy Hydrogen future.

Click below to access the full article.

Download PDF • 622KB


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