Accelerating Green Hydrogen Technologies and Energy Storage for the Energy Transitions

Over the last 50 years, the energy mix of the G20 countries has experienced a profound change. G20 countries have started increasing their share of renewable energy since the UN Convention on Climate Change and the Kyoto Protocol, with the energy mix becoming more diversified. By 2019, the G20 members that relied on renewables the most were Brazil at 16%, Germany at 16% and the UK at 14%1.

Transforming an energy system towards one highly electrified and dominated by renewable energy, particularly solar and wind, comes with challenges related to the system requirements needed to balance supply and demand in the power system. To effectively manage large shares of solar and wind in the power sector, sources of flexibility need to be planned for and fully exploited across across the power sector, including end-uses with sector coupling. This means assessing resources from power generation to transmission and distribution systems, storage (both electrical and thermal) and different levels of demand response.

G20 countries have been at the forefront of the energy transition with increased political momentum, as well as rapid deployment, not only for renewables but also for the development of energy storage and electrification of end-uses. This creates an opportunity for knowledge exchange between G20 countries on best practices and initiatives to accelerate innovation.

To help shed light on the requirements and implications of the energy transition and the goal of achieving net-zero emissions from the energy sector, IRENA’s World Energy Transitions Outlook (WETO) 2022 outlines a pathway for the next 30 years towards a net-zero energy future. The report outlines critical technologies and solutions needed to enable the transition, the level of investment required and the related benefits. In addition, IRENA has assessed the challenges of the power sector and evaluated already commercial and cutting-edge solutions under specific regional or national energy contexts towards the energy transition.

As part of the Indonesian G20 presidency and its Energy Transitions Working Group (ETWG), IRENA organised a workshop on the future of energy globally, focusing on the G20 and emerging countries. The event was associated with the Energy Transitions Working Group of the G20.

This webinar discussed the experiences and plans in G20 countries in deploying different energy storage technologies to meet different requirements of the power system e.g., from green hydrogen to batteries and pumped hydro - to provide energy services that facilitate the decarbonisation of the power system while increasing reliability and energy security. It also debated how the production of green hydrogen can bring flexibility to the operation of power systems by showcasing G20-countries experiences in this topic.