May 16, 2024
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min read

Can Finland Become the Next Hydrogen Powerhouse?

Finland possesses several advantages that position it as a potential leader in hydrogen energy production, with the potential to transform its economy and create significant employment opportunities.
Can Finland Become the Next Hydrogen Powerhouse?
Hynet hydrogen product plant in Kent, UK - Unsplash

Finland has emerged as a strong contender in the global race for hydrogen energy dominance, thanks to a unique set of advantages that could revolutionise its economy and create substantial employment opportunities.

A recent €45 million grant from the EU's European Hydrogen Bank to Finnish company Nordic Ren-Gas, which plans to build a renewable fuel production plant in Lahti, has further fueled this optimism. The grant recognizes Finland's competitive edge in hydrogen production.

Several factors contribute to Finland's favorable position:

  1. Abundant emission-free electricity: Finland has a substantial and growing capacity for renewable energy generation.
  2. Waste heat utilization: The waste heat produced during hydrogen production can be effectively harnessed for district heating in cities.
  3. Biomass-based carbon dioxide sources: These resources, essential for further processing of hydrogen, are readily available in Finland.
  4. Affordable electricity: While household electricity prices may be high, industrial electricity is comparatively cheap, making Finland competitive in energy-intensive processes like hydrogen production.
  5. Naturally occurring hydrogen: Recent discoveries of high concentrations of natural hydrogen in Finland offer a more efficient source for energy production compared to artificial methods.

The potential for hydrogen production in Finland is vast. LUT University's research suggests that Finland could increase its electricity production tenfold. This abundance of electricity, coupled with the growing availability of renewable energy sources, makes Finland a prime location for large-scale green hydrogen production.

The applications of hydrogen are diverse, ranging from fuels and plastics to glues and solvents. As the demand for green alternatives grows across various industries, Finland's hydrogen capabilities could prove invaluable.

The development of the hydrogen industry also promises significant employment benefits. The Confederation of Finnish Industries (EK) estimates that existing hydrogen projects in Finland could create up to 100,000 jobs by 2035.

While challenges remain, such as securing a reliable supply of biomass-based carbon dioxide for downstream processing, the overall outlook for Finland's hydrogen future is promising. With strategic planning and investment, Finland could very well become a global leader in hydrogen energy, reaping substantial economic and environmental rewards.

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