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Europe Invests Heavily in African Green Hydrogen Projects
March 2022

Europe Invests Heavily in African Green Hydrogen Projects

African countries captured 11% of the green hydrogen projects announced in 2021. Bridget van Dorsten, hydrogen and emerging technologies research analyst of consulting firm Wood Mackenzie stated that African countries have captured more than half of the current pipeline of green hydrogen projects announced since 2015. Van Dorsten has stated that ‘with some of the best sun and wind resources in the world, the region has incredible potential for green hydrogen production’, resulting in Europe’s high investment in the continent.

Mauritania and Namibia secured 15 gigawatts (GW) of green hydrogen projects during 2021. Mauritania’s 10GW solar, windy and hydrogen project has received the funding of a set of UK firms including Chariot Energy Group, a transitional energy firm. Germany will invest USD $9.4 million in the Tsau//Khaeb National Park Hyphen Hydrogen project which is expected to produce 300,000 tonnes per year of green hydrogen.

Wood Mackenzie’s forecasts have shown that countries able to produce the cheapest renewable energy would have the cheapest average costs for green hydrogen. Mining and mobility sectors, including aviation, marine fuels and heavy-duty transport are expected to transition towards the use of green hydrogen in its operations. Hydrogen itself is ideal for vertical integration – should a mine produce hydrogen for batteries, it could also use it for other processes such as green steel production or export it as an additional stream of revenue.

Van Dorsten noted that while mining companies have already implemented decarbonisation goals and strategies ahead of international and national mandates, the mining sector does not appear to be ready to use green hydrogen. Manufacturers of the machines used by miners such as hydrogen-based hauling trucks are not currently available, though introduction of green machines alongside hydrogen’s use in other industries is expected to create a competitive market for the green resource.