Scottish Government Hydrogen Policy Statement

We set out our vision for Scotland to become a leading hydrogen nation in the production of reliable, competitive, sustainable hydrogen, securing Scotland’s future as a centre of international excellence as we establish the innovation, skills and and supply chain to underpin our energy transition.

Chapter 10. Hydrogen Research, Innovation, and Demonstration

Policy Priorities: Hydrogen Research, Innovation, and Demonstration

A focused programme of research, innovation and demonstration of technologies and systems along the entire hydrogen value chain will support the development of the hydrogen sector in Scotland. The strategic objective of this activity will be to decrease costs and improve the efficiency of robust and replicable hydrogen solutions which can be applied across our energy system.

Building on our strong foundations, we will stimulate hydrogen research, innovation and demonstration of technologies and systems which will help build domestic production and usage of renewable and low-carbon hydrogen, scaling up to full commercialisation in the late 2020s as demand grows.

Strong collaborative working between industry and academia, sharing innovation and knowledge of hydrogen technologies, will enable advances in the development of our hydrogen economy.

We will publish a Guidance Note on the development and consenting pathway for an offshore power to gas development model and commission research to further understanding of the technical, and environmental impact of geological storage of hydrogen.

We also recognise that public perceptions and consumer acceptance of hydrogen requires to be better understood so we will commission research and public engagement in this area.

In 2021, we will launch our new support framework for energy technology innovation with a strong focus on hydrogen.

Research, Innovation and Demonstration

Scotland has a long and proud tradition of innovation in the energy sector, with world class research institutions, testing facilities and businesses. Although many of the technologies required for hydrogen are already mature, as described elsewhere in this document, research and innovation still has an important role to play to reduce costs, improve safety and efficiency, and enable the production and use of hydrogen at scale.

Our support for innovation includes working closely with a number of research bodies including the Energy Technology Partnership (ETP) and the Scottish Research Partnership in Engineering (SRPe).

Our support of the ETP, an alliance of Scotland's world-class academic institutions includes funding for the Knowledge Exchange Network, and the Energy Industry Doctorate Programme, which supports PhD projects tackling innovation challenges across the energy sector, including hydrogen based projects.

Advanced manufacturing and energy are two strategic areas of research by the SRPe. This partnership of Scotland's universities works in collaboration with industry and government to future-proof Scotland's position as a world-class centre of research excellence and globally competitive driving force in engineering.

Our Energy Investment Fund (EIF) has made over £85 million of commercial investments across the energy sector. This has supported innovative technology companies to develop ideas and deliver projects, alongside support for community energy projects.

With the EIF now due to come to an end in its current form by the end of March 2021, work has already begun on its replacement. This will build on the success of EIF to date and, alongside partners, play an important role in supporting commercial investment into innovative low carbon technologies. We are developing a new framework of support for energy innovation. To underpin this, we will launch a call for evidence in early 2021 seeking views on how best to maximise Scotland's world-leading research talent and facilities for energy innovation.

Details of our new support framework will be announced by the end of 2021, outlining for the first time how we will build on our existing strong track record in investment in innovative energy technology through a comprehensive package of capital funding and wider support. We expect this framework to have a strong focus on technology development in the hydrogen sector, and help to accelerate the contribution that hydrogen can make to Scotland's low carbon economy.

We will create a community of interest which will include scientific advice from multiple disciplines to help inform our ongoing work on hydrogen. Key areas identified for further research and development include: integration of large scale hydrogen into the energy system; cost reduction opportunities for hydrogen production; hydrogen storage technologies and solutions; industrial 'blue-flame' processes; transmission and distribution; hydrogen from bioenergy and gasification, and increasing public awareness of hydrogen.

Investing in hydrogen focussed research will help develop robust technology solutions as part of new support framework for energy technology innovation and will help to unlock the expansion of the hydrogen economy, and also help develop Scotland's place in the growing global hydrogen market.



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