KUALA LUMPUR (Aug 28): Malaysia’s upcoming Hydrogen Economy and Technology Roadmap will underline ways for the nation to attract investments for the production of this new commodity in order to become a main green hydrogen export hub by 2027.
“It would be remiss” not to mention green hydrogen’s potential as a fuel alternative, said Minister of Natural Resources, Environment and Climate Change Nik Nazmi Nik Ahmad.
“The federal government, in collaboration with state governments and utilities like TNB (Tenaga Nasional Bhd), is excited to explore the prospect of harnessing a new energy carrier and the knock-on economic effects it would bring,” Nik Nazmi said.
“We aim to unlock the hydrogen economy through the NETR (National Energy Transition Roadmap) and the Hydrogen Economy and Technology Roadmap (HETR), which is targeted to be rolled out later this year,” the minister said when launching The Energy Transition Conference 2023 here on Monday (Aug 28).
Malaysia, a key producer of natural gas, has been exploring hydrogen as a new resource in light of rising demand for green energy. This is in light of its gas-like nature, which means it can be stored and transported, unlike other existing raw RE such as solar, hydro and wind.
While hydrogen itself does not emit carbon when consumed as a fuel source, production of the molecules using green energy has been very expensive — said to cost at least US$250 (RM1,164) per barrel of oil equivalent, as opposed to the selling price of crude oil of about US$70-per-barrel range at present.
Proponents of hydrogen include national oil and gas company Petronas as well as the Sarawak state government, which intends to utilise its vast hydro electricity generation capacity to support green hydrogen production. The state has also tested its first hydrogen-powered autonomous rapid transit tram this month.
National utility outfit TNB is also looking at hydrogen, in a bid to explore hydrogen-fired gas plants.
Malaysia is among the world’s largest producers of natural gas, which fuels almost half of domestic electricity consumption. It is also a key exporter to countries like Japan, which said in June it wanted to generate US$107 billion in investments for hydrogen supply in the next 15 years to speed up its own decarbonisation journey.
Malaysia’s launch of the hydrogen roadmap will come on the heels of NETR, whose second phase is set to be launched on Tuesday (Aug 29) and represents one of its new government’s key economic transformation agenda that seeks to turn Malaysia’s need to transition to renewables into a growth opportunity — considering the nation’s RE potential and position within Asean — to support the Asean grid and its rising demand for green energy.
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