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CertifHy launches Europe's first Green Hydrogen Guarantees of Origin

Europe is moving one step forward towards a new and transparent hydrogen market. The CertifHy project has launched the first EU-wide Guarantee of Origin (GO) scheme for Green Hydrogen issuing over 75 000 GOs onto the market in a first pilot. Hydrogen consumers from industry and transport can use renewable energy in their processes and reduce the greenhouse gas (GHG) footprint by purchasing CertifHy Green or Low Carbon Hydrogen Guarantee of Origins.

Hydrogen

The CertifHy project has launched the first EU-wide Guarantee of Origin (GO) scheme for Green Hydrogen issuing over 75 000 certificates onto the market in a first pilot. A Guarantee of Origin labels the origin of the hydrogen providing end-users with proof that the hydrogen originates from a renewable or low carbon energy source.

A Guarantee of Origin labels the origin of a commodity product such as hydrogen providing information to customers on the source of the product. It operates as a tracking system ensuring the quality of a product.

The piloted CertifHy GO system for hydrogen is similar to existing green electricity or biomethane schemes in that it decouples the green attribute from the physical flow of the hydrogen and provides transparency to hydrogen consumers on its origin. This helps create market pull for Green and Low-carbon hydrogen, EU-wide, independently from production sites.

The CertifHy pilot GO scheme has dispatched over 75 000 Green and Low Carbon Guarantees of Origin that are issued into the registry. Participating hydrogen producers issuing GOs in the pilot include the industrial gas companies Air Liquide and Air Products, speciality chemicals company Nouryon, the retailer Colruyt Group and the energy utility Uniper.

Building on CertifyHy 1

The preparatory research leading the development of the Guarantee of Origin was carried out in CertifHy 1, a two project funded under the EU’s Seventh Framework Programme (FP7/2007-2013) for the Fuel Cells and Hydrogen Joint Undertaking (FCH JU). The project, which was completed in 2016, was coordinated by Belgium-based consultancy Hinicio SA with the Dutch Energy Research Center ECN, TÜV SÜD and Ludwig Bölkow Systemtechnik GmbH from Germany as consortium partners.

A large variety of global hydrogen value-chain players supported the CertifyHy 1 project as affiliated partners including Air Liquide, Air Products, AkzoNobel, Areva H2Gen, BMW, Colruyt Group, EDF, Group Machiels, Hydrogenics, Linde, OMV, Shell, Total and Uniper.

Close up of a nozzle at a hydrogen refuelling station.

A close up of a nozzle at a public hydrogen refuelling station for fuel cell vehicles.

The resulting CertifHy GO scheme has been developed in step-by-step consultation with the CertifHy Stakeholder Platform. Together with its topical Working Groups, the scheme has brought together all European stakeholders interested in green and low carbon hydrogen GOs.

Furthermore, as of 2016, certain FCH JU projects are required to prove that they are using or producing Green or Low Carbon hydrogen. This can be achieved by complying with criteria developed by the FCH JU CertifHy 1 project.

Validate practical Guarantee of Origin implementation

A CertifHy GO provides end-users with proof that the hydrogen originates from renewable and/or low carbon energy sources. This means that the hydrogen is either produced from renewable sources or from non-renewable low carbon energy sources. The former is defined as ‘Green Hydrogen’ and the latter as ‘Non-Renewable Low Carbon Hydrogen’.

Hydrogen is used in large quantities as a chemical feedstock in various industrial applications, including refineries, and could play an important role in transport as well. According to CertifHy, the global demand for hydrogen is forecasted to reach 50 million tonnes by 2025. The market is predicted to grow globally 3,5 percent per annum.

The world's first hydrogen fuel cell passenger train, an Alstom Coradia iLint.

All aboard the world’s first hydrogen fuel cell passenger train, an Alstom Coradia iLint that operates on EVB’s Cuxhaven, Bremerhaven, Bremervörde, and Buxtehude line in Lower Saxony, Germany (photo courtesy René Frampe).

The objective of the CertifHy pilot is to test the design and operation of the CertifHy scheme. This includes procedures, the associated costs for the various users, the information communication technology (ICT) platform and other elements. The final design of the scheme is expected by March 2019 and will incorporate pilot test results.

CertifHy invites existing hydrogen consumers to participate in the pilot and acquire CertifHy GOs.

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