THP-E152: What Industries Should Hydrogen Tackle First?

September 29, 2022 • Paul Rodden • Season: 2022 • Episode: 152

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Welcome to The Hydrogen Podcast!

In episode 152, A new study could put the brakes on utilizing hydrogen for home heating. And Cemvita announces a new test for gold hydrogen. All this on today’s hydrogen podcast.

Thank you for listening and I hope you enjoy the podcast. Please feel free to email me at with any questions. Also, if you wouldn’t mind subscribing to my podcast using your preferred platform… I would greatly appreciate it.

Paul Rodden



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Start Here: The 6 Main Colors of Hydrogen


A new study could put the brakes on utilizing hydrogen for home heating. And Cemvita announces a new test for gold hydrogen. All this on today’s hydrogen podcast. So the big questions in the energy industry today are, how is hydrogen the primary driving force behind the evolution of energy? Where is capital being deployed for hydrogen projects globally? And where are the best investment opportunities for early adopters who recognize the importance of hydrogen? I will address the critical issues and give you the information you need to deploy capital. Those are the questions that will unlock the potential of hydrogen and this podcast will give you the answers. My name is Paul Rodden and welcome to the hydrogen podcast.

In an article from BBC, Jonah Fisher writes, Study contradicts Rees-Mogg over hydrogen for heating. A new study has cast doubt on government claims that hydrogen could be used to heat homes and so cut greenhouse gas emissions. The report published in the journal Joule analyzed more than 30 studies that looked at hydrogen and heating. All of those studies found that hydrogen was much less efficient and more costly than alternatives like heat pumps. Last week, the business Secretary Jacob Rees-Mogg over hydrogen for told the commons that hydrogen was quote, a silver bullet. Hydrogen, unlike hydrocarbons doesn’t give off co2 when it burns, leading to hopes that it could play a key role in decarbonizing the economy.

Mr. Rees-Mogg over hydrogen for said hydrogen could be used as a way to store excess renewable power and quote, with some adjustments piped through to people’s houses to heat them during winter. Many energy scientists agree with Mr. Rees-Mogg over hydrogen for assessment that hydrogen could play a role in storing energy. For example, on a windy or sunny day when renewables are generating more electricity than the grid needs. Many also see it having a future in specialist industries that will prove hard to electrify it like shipping, steel production or aviation. In a quote from Jan Rosenow the report’s author and Europe director at the energy think tank, the Regulatory Assistance Project said, using hydrogen for heating may sound attractive at first glance, however, all the independent research on this topic comes to the same conclusion.

Heating with hydrogen is a lot less efficient and more expensive than alternatives such as heat pumps, district heating, and solar thermal. Now the appeal of hydrogen is that it is clean when burned, and that it can be made from water and almost limitless resource. But it’s no miracle energy source with big challenges associated with how the hydrogen is made. Most of the world’s hydrogen is currently manufactured using hydrocarbons, or grey hydrogen, a process which is more polluting than just using methane gas. So for hydrogen to be considered green electricity for renewable resources has to be used to electrolyze water. The problem is that the processes is inefficient generating electricity from wind and solar converting it to hydrogen and then burning the hydrogen at home uses more energy than just using the electricity to directly heat the home with a heat pump. And a quote from David Stephen of the hydrogen Science Coalition and professor of mechanical engineering in Cambridge University.

In the UK, heating homes with green hydrogen would use approximately six times more renewable electricity than heat pumps, he continues to say we do not have the time or resources to waste further investigating hydrogens role in home heating, especially when the well known laws of thermodynamics determine the answer. The report said there was a risk that discussion of hydrogen for heating in the future led to a delay in the deployment of clean heating technologies that are already available today. Okay, so good coverage on the report by jewel by the BBC. And I think it’s something that those of us who are hydrogen activists need to be aware of. And some of the things about this report that I believe need to be kept in mind is that one when they’re talking about energy efficiency to make the hydrogen and then use it in home heating, they’re strictly talking about using electrolytic hydrogen for this purpose. But then again, that’s not really surprising considering this is coming from the UK, where green hydrogen is really the only hydrogen that they’re going to discuss.

But really, ultimately, I don’t find much fault into what this report is suggesting. There are so many other applications that need to be addressed by utilizing hydrogen that the discussion of using hydrogen to heat homes really should be taking a backseat to other applications that can be used right now. Next, in a press release on September 27, Cemvita’s factory announced multiple developments with its gold hydrogen business. After achieving a key milestone in micro performance required to produce hydrogen at $1 per kilogram in the lab. Cemvita successfully completed a field pilot program with positive results. Following successful field trial results. Cemvita has created a whole owned subsidiary for the gold hydrogen business gold h2 LLC, and subsequently raised and closed funding into the entity led by founding investors, chart industries and 8090 industries. Now Cemvita defines gold hydrogen as the biological production of hydrogen in the subsurface through the consumption of trapped or abandoned resources. Gold hydrogen is a novel source of carbon neutral hydrogen produced from depleted oil reservoirs that are ready for plug and abandonment, extending the life of wells that would otherwise be a significant burden. In a quote from Rayyan Islam, Co-Founder and General Partner at 8090 Industries.

We’ve long held a firm belief and the role biology can play in the energy industry 8090 Industries is thrilled to be a founding investor in supporting Cemvita’s spin out initiative, gold h2, which is pioneering a new dawn for energy industry. We have incredible conviction in next generation clean hydrogen production methods that leverage the vast and sprawling existing infrastructure and know how of the oil and gas industry. It turns out, this approach leads to the lowest possible cost of hydrogen production today, and the largest players in the energy and industrial sector have taken serious notice. Cemvita scientists increased micro performance by six and a half times the rate needed to produce hydrogen at $1 per kilogram, a key milestone necessary to advance the program toward commercialization. The subsequent field trial was completed in the Permian Basin with a partnering company where the team successfully measured hydrogen concentrations, three orders of magnitude above baseline, and a quote from Zack Broussard, Director of gold h2 at Cemvita, in a very short timeframe. We moved our microbes from the lab to the field, the hydrogen production and its trial exceeded our expectations.

As we continue to use hydrogen producing microbes down hole, we anticipate we can achieve rates that will translate to hydrogen production at $1 per kilogram, or less. Traditional methods of producing hydrogen without greenhouse gas emissions include electrolysis powered by renewable resources like solar, wind and hydro. But according to recent studies, the Global Green hydrogen market size was valued at $300 million dollars in 2022, is growing at a compound annual growth rate of 54.7% from 2021 to 2028, and is projected to reach 9.8 billion by 2028. Green hydrogen production, however, is energy intensive and expensive. According to a report from s&p global commodity insights, the cost of electrolytic hydrogen from renewable energy spiked as high as $16.80 per kilogram and late July of 2022. Because Cemvita plans to utilize existing infrastructure for 1000s of depleted oil and gas wells to produce cheap, clean, carbon free hydrogen. The technology has the potential to be transformational in the energy transition. And a quote from Jill Evanko, Chart Industry’s CEO and President.

Chart industries is proud to partner with Cemvita on their gold hydrogen activities. The commercialization and economics of the hydrogen economy will require technologies that produce the hydrogen molecule at a meaningful scale with no carbon emissions. Gold h2 is leading the charge and we are thrilled with the results of their successful field trial. Following successful milestones in the lab and in preparation for commercialization. Cemvita elected to create gold h2 as a way to commercialize the business through a mixture of licensing JV structures, and outright ownership of hydrogen producing assets. Charles Nelson, the business officer of Cemvita says, By deploying the business through the flexible subsidiary route, we can effectively maximize the commercial value of the program back to the parent company Cemvita through both licensing and enterprise value growth. Alright, so big news coming from Cemvita, and their new subsidiary gold h2. Now this is a different type of gold hydrogen than we’ve talked about in the past.

Previously, we’ve talked about gold hydrogen, as naturally occurring hydrogen within the Earth’s crust that can then be drilled for an extract it and there are some companies trying to do that now. And we’ve also heard about other in situ ways of getting hydrogen, most notably from proton, which was also cross verified by the Bureau of Economic Geology at the University of Texas at Austin. And so now what we have is biologically produced in the subsurface gold hydrogen. Now, if you’re not in the oil and gas industry, a plugged and abandoned well, or a PNA aid well, is a big liability for oil and gas companies. And so to leverage in situ hydrogen, in these cases, not only extends the life of the well, but takes that PNA liability off the oil and gas operators balance sheet. Now, there’s still a lot of testing to be done with this technology. But if these initial results are any indication, this method of hydrogen production could be a huge game changer in the near future. All right, that’s it for me, everyone.

If you have a second, I would really appreciate it. If you could leave a good review on whatever platform it is that you listen to Apple podcast, Spotify, Google, YouTube, whatever it is, that will be a tremendous help to the show. And as always, if you ever have any feedback, you’re welcome to email me directly at And as always, take care. Stay safe. I’ll talk to you later. Hey, this is Paul. I hope you liked this podcast. If you did and want to hear more. I’d appreciate it if you would either subscribe to this channel on YouTube, or connect with your favorite platform through my website at Thanks for listening. I very much appreciate it. Have a great day.