100% renewable targets will require power storage to manage flows on the net
Electrolysers utilise these intermittent power flows to produce H2 gas from water
H2 gas can be stored in large quantities underground and transported via existing gas pipelines
H2 vehicles recharge faster and are more durable than battery powered transport
Growing H2 demand in industrial processes will reduce costs and increase supply

EU Commission published its long-awaited Strategy for Climate Action till 2050  on November 28, 2018: COM2018/733, “A Clean Planet for all A European strategic long-term vision for a prosperous, modern, competitive and climate neutral economy provides the basis for life changing actions to contribute to zero.net emissions by 2050 in Europe.

Hydrogen is mentioned in a supporting role “through the production of e-fuels” like e-hydrogen and “is likely to become more prominent in a fully decarbonised energy system,” the Commission says. The EU’s long-term budget proposal (2021-2027) unfortunately does not significantly aknowledge that the transition from a gas system, based on imports, will need large efforts to produce and distribute a combination of hydrogen and natural gas,  which is largely produced domestically.

A week before energy and environment ministers from Denmark, Finland, France, Italy, Luxembourg, the Netherlands, Portugal, Slovenia, Spain and Sweden co-signed a joint letter to EU Commissioner Miguel Arias Cañete calling for “a clear direction” towards net-zero emissions.

The document presented on November 28, 2018 includes  modelling that is showing that net-zero emissions would mean “estimated benefits of up to 2% of GDP by 2050 compared to the baseline”. EU GDP is expected to double from the 1990 level by mid-century, which means extra cash of around €400 billion. It also states that “(Climate change).. .would have severe consequences on the productivity of Europe’s economy, infrastructure, ability to produce food, public health, biodiversity and political stability. Weather-related disasters caused a record € 283 billion in economic damages last year and could affect about two-thirds of the European population by 2100, compared with 5% today. For instance annual damages due to river floods in Europe could reach € 112 billion, from thecurrent €5 billion. 16% of the present Mediterranean climate zone may become arid by the end of the century and in several Southern European countries outdoor labour productivity may decline by around 10-15% from present-day levels.

Environment and Energy minsiters are scheduled to discuss the stratey in their respective meetings on December 19 and 20.