Department of Energy Issues New Hydrogen Strategy and Roadmap

Published: June 8, 2023 

By Concentric Staff Writer 

The U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) on June 5 issued a new framework for accelerating the production and usage of clean hydrogen over the coming decades, its latest effort to support the technology as part of the Biden-Harris administration’s efforts to combat climate change. 

The U.S. National Clean Hydrogen Strategy and Roadmap will provide a “snapshot” of hydrogen production, transport, storage and usage in the U.S. today as well as a plan for large-scale clean hydrogen scenarios for 2030, 2040 and 2050, DOE said. It also identifies needs for collaboration between government agencies, industry, academia, national laboratories, tribal communities, environmental groups, labor unions, and others.  

“Accelerating the deployment of hydrogen is key to achieving President Biden’s vision for an affordable, secure clean energy future,” U.S. Energy Secretary Jennifer M. Granholm said in a written statement. “That’s why DOE worked alongside our federal partners to develop the U.S. National Clean Hydrogen Strategy and Roadmap that will lay the foundation for a strong and productive partnership between the public and private sectors and will guide government and industry to realize the full potential of this incredibly versatile energy resource.” 

The plan has three major strategies, including targeting strategic uses for clean hydrogen in high-impact applications where there are limited alternatives, such as in the industrial sector, heavy-duty transportation and long-duration energy storage. A second strategy is reducing the cost of clean hydrogen through innovation, scaling up, stimulating private sector investment and developing a clean-hydrogen supply chain, while a third strategy is focusing on regional networks with large-scale clean-hydrogen development. 

The roadmap was released in draft form in September 2022 for comment, and the new plan includes input from industry, academia, and non-profits as well as state, local, and tribal governments, DOE said. It is a “living document” that will be updated every three years. 

DOE said that clean hydrogen offers substantial economic benefits and will create thousands of new, good-paying jobs, especially in disadvantaged communities. A DOE report issued in March, Pathways to Commercial Liftoff: Clean Hydrogen, found that that new hydrogen economy could add 100,000 net new and indirect jobs by 2030.  

A May 11 proposal from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency for new source performance standards for power plants also included low-greenhouse gas hydrogen co-firing among the technologies that can be applied directly to power plants that use fossil fuels.

The plan responds to language in the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law (Public Law 117-58) signed by Biden in 2021, which included a $9.5 billion investment in clean hydrogen, and the Inflation Reduction Act that included a new production tax credit for clean hydrogen. 

According to DOE, demand scenarios for 2030, 2040 and 2050 identified pathways for clean hydrogen decarbonization applications with opportunities for 10 million metric tons (MMT) of clean hydrogen annually by 2030, 20 MMT by 2040, and 50 MMT by 2050. Clean hydrogen can also reduce U.S. emissions by 10 percent by 2050 relative to 2005, consistent with the U.S. Long-Term Climate Strategy, the agency said. 

While the U.S. Congress required DOE to develop the strategy and roadmap, it will be developed across many agencies, including the U.S. Departments of Agriculture, Commerce, Defense, Energy, Interior, Labor, State, Transportation, and Treasury, the EPA, the National Aeronautics and Space Administration, the National Science Foundation, the Office of Science and Technology Policy and the White House. 


All views expressed by the author are solely the author’s current views and do not reflect the views of Concentric Energy Advisors, Inc., its affiliates, subsidiaries, or related companies. The author’s views are based upon information the author considers reliable at the time of publication. However, neither Concentric Energy Advisors, Inc., nor its affiliates, subsidiaries, and related companies warrant the information’s completeness or accuracy, and it should not be relied upon as such. 

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