Focus Topic 2021: Sustainable Chemistry and Renewable Energy: PtX and H2-Economy

ISC3 – International Sustainable Chemistry Collaborative Centre

Focus Topic 2021: Sustainable Chemistry and Renewable Energy: PtX and H2-Economy

The new focus topic of ISC3 is devoted to the nexus to renewable energies: How can Sustainable Chemistry (SC) contribute to sustainable renewable energy systems and vice versa?

Electricity can be stored in chemical bonds in the form of electrolytically generated hydrogen (H2) using carbon dioxide (CO2) as a carbon source. The use of “Power-to-X” technologies for example, “de-fossilises” carbon-based energy sources and chemical products and can enormously contribute to climate protection goals. The strategical plans of the European Union and countries like Germany to foster a “Hydrogen Economy” aim to give an impulse for more sustainable way of production. Nevertheless, the new transformative processes require enormous changes in regulations, technical infrastructure, financial incentives, awareness etc. Also new technologies can create an unforeseen number of unwanted side effects for the environment, economy and labour.

For ISC3 /GIZ as an organisation of international cooperation for sustainable development the questions and solutions to those side effects have the main priority. E.g.:

  • What do PtX technologies mean for land use?
  • Which rare resources will become scarce and endanger development in other economic sectors?
  • Can these new technologies compete with further essential social needs and concerns such as food security, the right to affordable drinking water or a just transition to more sustainable energy and mobility systems?
  • Can circular economy approaches provide new ways to cope with these questions?