The Crown Prince of Saudi Arabia Mohammed bin Salman announced the launch of a nationwide strategy to increase the transport and logistics sector’s contribution to non-oil revenues by $12 billion per year by 2030. As part of this strategy, Aramco, the world’s biggest oil company that is also state-owned, will be investing heavily in hydrogen technology.
Not only will Saudi Arabia be focusing on producing clean energy, but the production process itself will also be environmentally friendly.
At the moment, most hydrogen projects rely on fossil fuels, which results in the production of so-called brown or grey hydrogen. The process itself, while producing clean energy, releases large quantities of CO2 into the atmosphere.
Saudi Arabia’s plans, on the other hand, are to use carbon capture and storage (CCS) technology to eliminate CO2 emissions and produce an even cleaner product known as ‘blue hydrogen’.
Aramco is now seeking to establish a strong customer base and promote its hydrogen strategy in countries that are still behind in the development of low-carbon energy.
So far, the oil-producing country has already invested in CCS technology in its aim to reduce greenhouse gas emissions from its oil production. And given that this same technology will also be used to create blue hydrogen, Saudi Arabia is now among the first countries to have established an infrastructure for its production.
Another initiative of Saudi Arabia is to start producing green hydrogen from renewable energy sources. However, Aramco has yet to figure out how to lower production costs, as currently, they are roughly five times higher than the costs of producing blue hydrogen.