Shipping the sunshine to Europe. Economic comparison of imported electric fuels produced at excellent global sites

OeNB-Freitagsseminar mit Veronika Grimm (Chair of Economic Theory at Friedrich-Alexander-Universität Erlangen-Nürnberg)

The transformation of economies worldwide towards climate neutrality will require not only renewable electricity but also climate-neutral energy carriers such as hydrogen and its derivatives. The production cost of electric fuels (e-fuels) are to a large extent driven by the energy-intensive electrolytic water splitting. The option of producing e-fuels in highly industrialized countries, as Germany, competes with production at international locations, with excellent conditions for renewable energies and thus very low levelized cost of green hydrogen and its derivatives. We examine the economic efficiency of various imported e-fuels: Fischer-Tropsch diesel, methanol, and hydrogen transported as cryogenic liquid  or in form of liquid organic hydrogen carriers . We develop a model that covers the entire process chain, from the production of the e-fuels at various excellent locations worldwide to the energetic utilization of the fuels in heavy duty transport. We find that the choice of production site has a major impact on the cost using the respective fuels. Under the selected boundary conditions and assumptions, methanol and cryogenic hydrogen are the most favorable options in five of the seven scenarios examined. Especially in the case of diesel, the levelized cost of electricity determined by the full load hours of the applied renewable energy source have a huge impact. An LOHC-based system is shown to be less dependent on electricity source compared to other technologies due to its comparatively low electricity consumption. The length of the transportation route and the price of the filling station infrastructure, however, increase cost for LOHC and LH2. Comparison with green hydrogen produced in Europe allows an assessment of the potential role of hydrogen imports from various regions worldwide considered in our study.

Veronika Grimm
Professor and Chair of Economic Theory at Friedrich-Alexander-Universität Erlangen-Nürnberg (FAU),

Monday, 19 December 2022 | Start: 02:00 PM | End: 03:30 PM              

The event is planned both, online via Webex and onsite with limited attendance by invitation only at the Oesterreichische Nationalbank, Otto-Wagner-Platz 3, 1090 Vienna, Veranstaltungssaal, Ground Floor

  • Kontakt