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China grapples with hydrogen supply-demand discrepancy

The country continues to grow its hydrogen network to address this challenge.

China is experiencing a supply-demand mismatch in the hydrogen sector as there is significant demand in the easter region but the renewable energy resources needed for its production are abundant in the north.

In a report, Rystad Energy said the geographical disparity is compelling the country to expand its hydrogen pipelines.

For example, state-owned oil and gas firm Sinopec is developing a 400-kilometre pipeline connecting Ulanqab in Inner Mongolia to Yanshan in Baihing, with an initial capacity of 100,000 tonnes per annum (tpa), and an expansion plan of up to 500,000 tpa.

Tangshan Haitai New Energy Technology in Hebei is also developing the $845m hydrogen pipeline from Zhangjiakou to the port of Caofeidian via Chengde and Tangshan, spanning 737 kilometres. This is set to be the longest hydrogen pipeline once executed.

Sinopec subsidiary China Petroleum Pipeline Engineering Corporation targets to expand this network to 6,000 kilometres by 2050.

Meanwhile, Rystad also noted that provinces with stronger solar and wind potential are also ramping up their hydrogen production targets, with Inner Mongolia aiming for 480,000 tpa by 2025 and Gansu targeting 200,00 tpa.

“These provinces are heavyweights for transformation in the region, significantly affecting the 1 million target mentioned earlier and contributing enormously to China’s hydrogen production in the region,” the report read.

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