Hydrogen’s Spectrum of Colors

Hydrogen’s Spectrum of Colors

When hydrogen was initially seen as a way to achieve net zero carbon, a short list of colors was established to distinguish the various methods for generating hydrogen.

Grey indicated the hydrogen was made from natural gas using steam methane reforming (SMR), while green was to show that hydrogen had been produced from water using electrolysis.

If the objective of climate extremists wasn’t so damaging, their new approach to assigning a spectrum of colors to distinguish multiple shades of hydrogen would be laughable.

As always, extremists use extreme methods to achieve their objectives. In this instance, however, they look foolish.

Here are the original list of colors:

  • Grey hydrogen is made from methane using steam methane reforming.
  • Brown hydrogen is made from coal gas.
  • Blue hydrogen is made from methane gas using SMR with CO2 capture and sequestration.
  • Green hydrogen is produced from water using electrolysis where the electricity is generated by renewables, such as wind and solar.

Here are the new colors:

  • Black hydrogen is also made from coal, though there is confusion as to whether brown refers only to lignite, and not to all types of coal, or whether black refers to gasifiaction rather than steam reforming.
  • Pink hydrogen is made from water using electrolysis with the electricity generated form nuclear power.
  • Turquoise hydrogen is made using pyrolysis, an experimental process that produces hydrogen and solid carbon.
  • Yellow hydrogen is made using electrolysis with the electricity generated by solar.
  • White hydrogen is hydrogen found naturally in a few underground locations.

To add to the confusion, yellow hydrogen is also referred to as hydrogen made using electrolysis where the electricity comes from the grid, which means the source of the electricity could be from a mixture of natural gas, coal-fired, nuclear and renewable power plants.

And rather than Pink, some refer to hydrogen from nuclear as purple, though this may infer that the hydrogen is made using high temperature thermochemical processes.

While climate alarmists are conjecturing what to call hydrogen, which is actually a clear, odorless gas, there are serious consequences to using hydrogen, including dangers of explosions, as described in the report, Hydrogen and Climate Change at https://bit.ly/3wgJOP3

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10 Replies to “Hydrogen’s Spectrum of Colors”

  1. So now not only do we have dirty and clean CO2, we also have dirty and clean Hydrogen. Just a bunch of kids playing make-believe. Too bad they can’t focus on some of the real dirty stuff — like getting rid of trash mountains.

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