Climate change hope for hydrogen fuel
A tiny spark in the UK’s hydrogen revolution has been lit – at a university campus near Stoke-on-Trent. Hydrogen fuel is a relatively green alternative to alternatives that produce greenhouse gases.
The natural gas supply at Keele University is being blended with 20% hydrogen in a trial that's of national significance. Adding the hydrogen will reduce the amount of CO2 that’s being produced through heating and cooking.
Critics fear hydrogen will prove too expensive for mass usage, but supporters of the technology have high hopes.
Using natural gas for heating generates about a third of the UK emissions that are driving global warming. But the only product of burning hydrogen is water.
As a fuel, hydrogen functions in much the same way as natural gas. So staff in the university canteen say cooking on the 20% hydrogen blend has made no difference to their cooking regime.
The 20% proportion was chosen because it’s an optimal blend that won’t affect gas pipes and appliances. Currently, the UK has only small supplies of hydrogen, but the firm says increasing production would offer a quick way of cutting emissions from heating.