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Global hydrogen pipeline nears 1.2 TW as South America leads additions

By November 1, 2023November 23rd, 2023Global, Showcase Feed, Europe, Media, Hydrogen
  • Hydrogen electrolyser projects currently in development across the world total 1,190 GW, Aurora Energy Research’s latest global electrolyser database shows, with growth over the past six months slowing to 66 GW.
  • The regional diversity of the pipeline is increasing: South America leads additions since April 2023 at 25 GW, followed by Oceania at 20 GW, while Europe’s share of projects that have advanced beyond the early planning stage1 has dropped to 46%.
  • Global electrolyser manufacturing capacity is set to hit 59 GW/year in 2025, rising by over 20% since April 2023; production outside of Europe remains on track to surpass European output.
  • Europe remains the global leader in making its pipeline a reality: governments in the region are now on track to procure 2.5 GW by 2025, including auctions over the next six months that have the budget to secure more than 400 MW.

Hydrogen has transformative potential as an accelerator of the energy transition. By replacing fossil fuels in sectors that would otherwise be unable to decarbonise, such as heavy industry and transport, hydrogen can be a vital tool in removing key roadblocks along the path to Net Zero. As 2050 draws closer, efforts to scale up the hydrogen economy and realise its potential are increasing. This starts with production: the capacity of electrolyser projects in development across the world has risen to 1,190 GW, the latest edition of Aurora Energy Research’s global electrolyser database shows.

The pipeline has grown by 66 GW—or 6%—since the previous edition of the database, published in April 2023, falling from an 18% increase over the preceding six months. However, the development of projects that have advanced beyond the early planning stage is speeding up—capacity now totals 182 GW, growing by 48 GW—or 32%—since April 2023, rising from a 28% increase over the previous six months.

Additions to the pipeline since April 2023 signal the increasing globalisation of the emerging hydrogen economy. South America accounts for the largest share of projects added thanks to the new 25 GW Amigos del Verano project in Chile, which has already advanced beyond the early planning stage. Oceania takes second place—developers have announced 20 GW of electrolyser projects in the region since April 2023, shifting the spotlight from North America, which led additions to the previous version of the database. While Europe remains the most popular location for electrolyser projects overall, the region’s share of the pipeline has fallen to 46%, from 56% in April 2023.

Global electrolyser manufacturing capacity is now on track to reach 59 GW/yr in 2025, Aurora calculates, rising by 23% since April 2023. Cumulative capacity worldwide would enable manufacturers to produce 506 GW of electrolysers by 2030, far surpassing the 315 GW of electrolysers needed to deliver the current project pipeline. Manufacturing capacity outside of Europe remains on track to surpass European capacity by 2025—Europe’s share of total output will drop from 58% in 2024, to 47% in 2025, Aurora’s database shows.

Despite Europe’s declining dominance of the electrolyser project and manufacturing pipelines, the region remains the frontrunner in project delivery. Operational electrolyser capacity worldwide totals just 790 MW—equal to less than 3% of average electricity demand in the UK alone—and financing is a key constraint to future growth. Government support is vital to enabling developers to realise their projects and administrations across Europe are ramping up their provision. Planned auction schemes in the region are now on track to procure 2.5 GW of hydrogen by 2025. The next six months will be pivotal: governments are scheduled to announce support allocations for over 400 MW.

Anise Ganbold, Head of Research, Hydrogen, Aurora Energy Research, commented:

“It is clear from the latest edition of Aurora’s electrolyser database that a global shift is underway in the hydrogen market, with mega-projects exceeding 10 GW in capacity taking centre stage. South America’s surge in project announcements over the past six months underscores this trend, marking a significant departure from Europe’s traditional dominance.”

Dilara Caglayan, Lead Expert, European Hydrogen, Aurora Energy Research commented:

“Recent months have seen a surge in electrolyser projects advancing through the development pipeline, driven by subsidies in the US and Europe. Support schemes will play a crucial role in the market ramp-up of hydrogen, and with the upcoming auctions in Europe before the end of the year, we expect many more projects to accelerate through the pipeline in the near future.”

Aurora’s global electrolyser database is published with the biannual European Hydrogen Market Attractiveness Report. Get in touch to find out more about hydrogen subscription analytics.

Subscribers to the European Hydrogen service will get exclusive access to a strategic insight report covering the upcoming auctions in the region in December. Sign up here.

1 Aurora considers projects lacking key details such as specific locations, technology providers or target milestone timelines to be in the early planning stage of development.

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Megan Tracey, European Press Officer | +44 (0)7810 817354

From its Oxford academic roots, Aurora Energy Research has grown to become the largest dedicated power market analytics company in Europe, providing data-driven intelligence for strategic decisions in the global energy transformation. We are a diverse team of more than 500 experts with vast energy, financial and consulting backgrounds, covering power, hydrogen, carbon, and fossil commodities. We are active in Europe, Australia, and the US, working with world-leading organisations to provide comprehensive market intelligence, bespoke analytic and advisory services, and cutting-edge software.