Hydrogen is unsuitable for use in home heating, and likely to remain so, despite the hopes of the UK government and plumbing industry, a comprehensive review of scientific papers has concluded.
Hydrogen lobbyists are out in force at the Labour party conference this week, sponsoring several events in Liverpool, and will be plentiful at the Conservative party conference that begins this weekend.
They are hoping to persuade the UK government to push ahead with a mooted large-scale rollout of hydrogen for home heating, as a replacement for the gas used to heat the vast majority of British homes. Hydrogen proponents say it would avoid households having to replace gas boilers with heat pumps, the other main contender for low-carbon home heating.
But researchers reviewed 32 studies of hydrogen and concluded that it was unlikely to play a major role in home heating, either as a full replacement for fossil fuel gas heating, or as a blend with natural gas.
Jan Rosenow, Europe director at the Regulatory Assistance Project, an energy thinktank, and co-author of the study, said there were too many technical difficulties to overcome to make hydrogen a viable and economic low-carbon heating fuel.
“Using hydrogen for heating may sound attractive at first glance. However, all of 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,” he said.
The method being to conduct the experiment and find out.
Which means that ghastly little toads like Jan Rosenow who would forbid the experiment for fear that it might work can fuck off.