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Hydrogen from chlor-alkali production: as green as green can be

01/03/2021

Hydrogen is an important chemical for the climate neutral economy. Currently Europe is defining screening criteria for hydrogen but does not yet consider chlor-alkali electrolysis - a green process. The chlor-alkali sector produces some 0.27 million tonnes of hydrogen as a by-product of the highest purity. For this, chlor-alkali electrolysers use less electricity and emits less CO2 to produce 1kg of hydrogen than water electrolysis as this illustrative infographic shows. The climate neutrality of the electricity used is key here to determine the green nature of the produced hydrogen.

Unfortunately, 10 to 15% of this hydrogen produced is not used, equal to the output of a water electrolyser of 200 MW. This may change over time as demand for hydrogen increases, and more application solutions become available. Euro Chlor continues to strive to move towards full utilisation, and this will also be a key feature of our Mid-Century Strategy activities. Read more about the European chlor-alkali hydrogen utilisation rate at https://www.chlorineindustryreview.com/sustainability/.

A lack of market opportunities and/or necessary infrastructure are the main reasons for this waste of hydrogen from chlor-alkali production today. Our sector is asking for these barriers to be removed, so that the available hydrogen can be used for the transition towards a climate neutral Europe in 2050.

Hydrogen is obtained as a by-product in chlor-alkali production, the starting point of many value chains such as health protection, construction, green energy, and digital devices. For more information, contact Euro Chlor Regulatory Affairs Manager Kristof May at kma@cefic.be.