According to the European Investment Bank (EIB), Africa can earn a trillion euros annually from the production of green hydrogen from 2035. This hydrogen can be produced without CO2 emissions using solar energy and transported abroad.
The ‘Africa’s Extraordinary Green Hydrogen Potential’ report, analyzing Africa’s green hydrogen potential, was commissioned by the European Investment Bank, the International Solar Alliance, and the African Union, with the support of the Government of Mauritania, HyDeal, and UCLG Africa.
Four African hubs
The analysis highlighted the benefits of harnessing solar power to create green hydrogen in four African hubs: Mauritania, Morocco, southern Africa, and Egypt.
Harnessing Africa’s solar energy to produce 50 million tons of green hydrogen a year by 2035 can help secure the global energy supply, create jobs, decarbonize heavy industry, enhance global competitiveness and transform access to clean water and sustainable energy.
‘Global energy and climate crisis’
According to the report, Africa has the best solar energy in the world. Transforming solar power into green hydrogen can strengthen energy security, cut emissions and pollution, and decarbonize industry and transport.
“As the global energy and climate crises unfold, mass-scale competitive green hydrogen is ready to provide energy security, affordability, and decarbonization,” says Thierry Lepercq, President of HyDeal.
“Integrated hydrogen hubs bringing together upstream, midstream, and upstream players on the basis of long-term off-take contracts are building powerful business models.”
“Pioneering African countries such as Mauritania are showing the way, proving that Africa can help the world with green hydrogen – ensuring for itself a future of industrial development, fast and clean growth for all,”
The study highlights that solar power green hydrogen is economically viable and can be produced at less than two euros per kilogram, cheaper than traditional fossil fuel energy, and cater both to local energy demand and allow green hydrogen to be exported to global markets. This is equivalent to energy costs of USD 60 a barrel.
The new analysis estimates that green hydrogen investment could reduce carbon emissions in Africa by 40%, replacing 500 million tons of CO2 a year.
Large-scale green hydrogen generation will enable Africa to supply 25 million tons of green hydrogen to global energy markets, equivalent to 15% of current gas used in the European Union.