"Doral Group has identified the great potential of green hydrogen and is establishing the first project in Israel" / PR
Hydrogen is the most abundant element in nature. It is found in water (alongside oxygen), which constitutes 70% of the earth's surface. The fact that hydrogen is so abundant and available makes it a possible and highly efficient solution for energy production. It is isolated through a process in which the hydrogen and oxygen in the water are separated in a process that requires electricity. If the power source is polluting - for example, gas or coal - hydrogen is considered a pollutant. If the source of electricity is renewable energies, hydrogen is green and its production process does not pollute the environment.
"Green hydrogen production is done using a technology called electrolysis, in which renewable energy – solar or wind – is used to separate the water molecule into hydrogen and oxygen," explains Yam Efrati-Beckerman, Doral Group's hydrogen operations manager. "Hydrogen is a very energetic material that can be used in two ways: burn it to produce steam or turn it into fuel cells that generate electricity."
"Green hydrogen will help overcome the challenges of transitioning to 100% renewable energy"/ShutterStock
Is there no pollution in green hydrogen production?
"The entire process, from the production of hydrogen to its use, is free of greenhouse gas emissions. The only things that are emitted are oxygen and water. So it's natural and logical that the whole world is aiming there. Every industry that uses gas aims to replace it with green hydrogen."
The result is to address several of the challenges encountered in replacing polluting fuels with renewable energies: The first is that there are industries that cannot use solar energy – because they need a lot of heat, which requires burning gas or material. Green hydrogen provides them with an ideal solution because its kilo has 3 times the energy of a kilo of natural gas, without pollution. The second is the world of heavy transport: as opposed to electric cars; Trucks, semi-trailers, trains, airplanes, and ships cannot move based on a rechargeable battery. Therefore, the expectation is that with the development of the use of green hydrogen, it will be the solution of these tools. So you could say that green hydrogen is the green fuel of the future."
And to what extent is the fuel of the present?
"There is already relatively extensive use of hydrogen in the world, about 90 million tons a year, but this still does not scratch the surface of the existing potential. Unfortunately, most of the hydrogen used today is still gray hydrogen – produced from natural gas or other polluting fuels. Its production process involves many emissions of carbon into the atmosphere. The goal is to replace this with green hydrogen, which emits only oxygen, and create an ecosystem that will consume much more hydrogen. Currently, green hydrogen is used mainly for refining fuels and chemicals such as ammonia, but it is estimated that by 2050 between 20% and 30% of the global energy sector will be based on it. Heavy industries such as steel will switch from gas to green hydrogen, and electricity production will also be based on it in large part: fertilizers, agricultural crops and, of course, the replacement of all fuels. This is obvious.
Another challenge that hydrogen can address is the electricity infrastructure. Renewable energy production usually takes place in areas where there is a lot of land – that is, in the periphery. The use, on the other hand, is mainly in more densely populated areas - that is, mainly in the center. The ability to transfer this energy in high-voltage power lines is very limited. Hydrogen provides a solution for this – it can be transported through pipelines."
"Increasing demand for green hydrogen will lower its price"/ShutterStock
Doral Group has identified the great potential of green hydrogen, entered the field and is currently in the midst of three large projects on the subject, including the first project in Israel for the production of green hydrogen. At the same time, business development processes are being carried out abroad, including projects in Europe, the United States and Australia, in which Doral cooperates with the technology giant Samsung and a prominent Australian fund.
Doral has invested in several technologies for producing hydrogen in a way that will significantly reduce its price so that it can compete with fossil fuels even without subsidies and government subsidies. Through its subsidiary Doral-Tech, it supports research related to the field, conducted at Bar Ilan University and the Technion. The company has also established a number of collaborations with companies engaged in green hydrogen and develops various projects with them to replace fuels with it.
What's stopping this from happening right now?
"Technology needs to improve and lower hydrogen production costs – but that's not the key to success. The key is regulation that will make it possible to produce hydrogen without bureaucratic barriers and the construction of a hydrogen transmission infrastructure that will enable it to be transferred from production locations to its various consumers. Assessments around the world are that the gas pipeline will also be suitable for hydrogen transmission, there are already such pilots in a number of places, and in the Netherlands such transmission has been taking place for a decade. Another barrier is spurring heavy and polluting industries to switch to green hydrogen. For this to happen, they must be provided with incentives or fined for pollution. Here, too, I am optimistic, because the whole world has already understood this point. When that happens, increasing the demand for green hydrogen will lower its price, because there will be much more production of green hydrogen, in much larger quantities. There will also be government subsidies. Canada is already giving grants to green hydrogen users, and Europe has set up a bank to help finance green hydrogen projects to increase demand for production and lower prices. The world assumes that what happened to solar energy prices – which 15 years ago were 10 times more expensive than now – will also happen to green hydrogen."
Assaf Levanon, in collaboration with Doral
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