Hydrogen Hubs: Without Huge Subsidies the Math Doesn’t Work

Originally published on Real Clear Energy

The White House has awarded $7 billion dollars of tax money for the first seven U.S. hydrogen hubs. They say it will leverage $43 billion in private money. Yet, the rules only require a 50/50 match. We are far more likely to see a $7 billion private money match. Why put more of your own money at risk than you have to?

It is risky because green hydrogen costs at least five times more to produce than the methane reforming method, which makes 95% today. That is $5 versus $1. All of the regional hydrogen infrastructure will need to be built, and the future hydrogen demand will need to be created and incentivized. Because green hydrogen still costs more. Even with upfront and downstream aggressive subsidies.

Because it is tax money we don’t have, it is added to our unprecedented $33 trillion dollar national debt. We are at an inflection point where interest payments are more than our national defense budget. Debt interest is projected to be more than a trillion dollars by the end of the decade. And the Rich Men North of Richmond just keep spending.

We are waiting to see the rules of who gets $3 kilogram tax subsidies. While using up to half taxpayer money to build the factories to produce this subsidized hydrogen.

It costs $5 or more to produce green hydrogen through hydrolysis. Which takes super heating, electrocuting, super chilling, and compression. Then additional costs for storage and transportation before it is used somewhere.

And it needs 53 times more water than hydrogen made. Not a good idea in dry California, which is awarded $1 billion in giveaway hub money.

All of this takes lots of full-time energy. Not the part-time unpredictable electricity wind and solar make. Let’s not talk about our stressed national grid with regular blackout and shortage notices. Or the fact that 60% of the electricity made for the grid comes from coal and natural gas.

Paying for full-time and part-time generation, and thousands of miles of transmission wires will at least triple our electric rates in no time.

This hurts the poor the most, because they use the biggest amount of their budgets on energy costs. Stressing their lives, hurting their ability to live independently. All of this, while Biden and the democrats blather about climate justice and social justice.

We are doing all this subsidizing to stop the addition of the super plant food CO2. That is greening our earthregrowing forests the size of France, and increasing crop yields and harvests around the world. To supposedly stop the warming of the planet that started naturally in 1850. As if we can.

Sammy Roth, a Los Angeles Times Columnists says “we have more than one chance in 14 million to defeat climate change.” Why are we wasting money on an impossible task?

The Rich Men North of Richmond are going to waste 100s of billions on green taxpayer giveaways on top of the $9.5 billion upfront hydrogen give away.

Throwing money at a climate emergency that doesn’t really exist is part of Bidenomics. Fueling inflation by spending money we don’t have, fueling high interest rates by fueling inflation. Making it difficult and expensive to harvest the fossil fuels that supply 80% of our energy. And sending 100s of billions, if not trillions, to our main rival and biggest threat, totalitarian, communist China is the Biden way.

Wind, solar, batteries, and soon EVs made in China with forced labor, low-cost coal electricity and little environmental protections. China burns more than half of the world’s 8.5 billion tons of coal used annually and is building hundreds of coal plants that last 50 to 75 years. I am sure they intend to use them for a few decades or 75 years.

For those that think CO2 emissions are important, China emits more than the U.S. and all the other industrialized nations combined. Including India, which is no slouch when it comes to using coal for power, getting even a larger percentage of their energy from coal than China.

Asia is growing their energy and coal use. While Biden is forcing early coal plant closures at great expense, increased electricity rates, causing loss of reliability and increased blackouts at home. Ignoring the fact that we cannot provide electricity all the time or make green hydrogen with part-time, unreliable wind and solar.

We need to end this crazy fantasy of a centrally forced transition to hydrogen, wind, solar, batteries and electric vehicles. It isn’t working and is making everything more costly. Because energy is in everything we eat, buy, use, consume, even Netflix and AI.

This is slowly raising prices and causing inflation, like a slowly warming kettle with a frog in it, all is ok until it isn’t. This green energy fantasy is utter madness.