China's Hydrogen Energy Market Can Take Its Own Path Of Sustainable Development

- Oct 15, 2019-

The number of hydrogen refueling stations currently under construction has increased significantly compared with the previous ones. However, due to the unfavorable factors such as high cost, weak technology and unrestricted approval standards, when will the hydrogen refueling stations under construction be hydrogen fuel vehicles? "Effect" is still unknown.

The government's determination to promote the construction of hydrogen refueling stations has been very clear, and the examination and approval department will also be aware of it. It is believed that the approval problems that currently plague enterprises will soon be resolved.

China has a vast hydrogen energy market. It is not necessary to take the road that developed countries have gone through or is going, and they can take the road of sustainable development of hydrogen energy.

In the past two years, the hydrogen energy industry has received much attention, and hydrogen fuel cell vehicles are the well-deserved “red-hot chicken” in the field of new energy vehicles. However, the rapid development of hydrogen fuel vehicles has also exposed the lag in the construction of hydrogen refueling stations. It is worth expecting that with the release of a number of favorable policies in the near future, this "delayed" problem will be effectively alleviated.

On April 8, the National Development and Reform Commission issued the "Guidance Catalogue for Industrial Structure Adjustment (2019, Draft for Soliciting Opinions)" (hereinafter referred to as "Draft for Comment"), in which high-efficiency hydrogen production, hydrogen transport and high-density hydrogen storage technology development Applications and equipment manufacturing, hydrogen refueling stations, etc. are included in the fifth category (new energy) of the encouraged category. On April 9, the "Opinions of the State Council on Implementing the Division of Labor of the Key Work Departments of the Government Work Report" was released, and proposed to stabilize automobile consumption, continue to implement preferential policies for the purchase of new energy vehicles, promote the construction of facilities for charging and hydrogenation, and recommend the Ministry of Finance. The Ministry of Industry and Information Technology, the National Development and Reform Commission, the Ministry of Commerce, the Ministry of Transport, the Ministry of Housing and Urban-Rural Development, and the National Energy Administration are responsible for this work.

There are only more than 10 hydrogen refueling stations available in China.

According to the data, there are nearly 400 hydrogen refueling stations in the world, mainly in Japan, South Korea, Europe and North America. There are only more than 10 in China.

"At present, China's hydrogen energy infrastructure construction, especially the construction of hydrogen refueling stations, has been progressing very slowly, which has seriously affected the development of domestic fuel cell vehicles." Wang Fengying, vice chairman of Great Wall Motors, stressed at this two sessions that there are only a few hydrogenation projects. It has been difficult for the station to keep up with the rapid development of hydrogen fuel cell vehicles. "China urgently needs to strengthen the construction of hydrogen energy infrastructure, especially hydrogen refueling stations, and rationalize the entire eco-chain of hydrogen fuel cell vehicle industry, so as to promote the healthy and rapid development of China's hydrogen fuel cell vehicle industry."

In fact, with the “redness” of hydrogen energy in the past two years, the number of hydrogen refueling stations under construction in China has increased significantly. However, due to the unfavorable factors such as high cost, weak technology and inconsistent approval standards, it is still unknown when these hydrogen refueling stations under construction can “effectively” for hydrogen fuel vehicles.

It is reported that the average construction cost of a medium-sized hydrogen refueling station in China is about 10-20 million yuan, which is obviously higher than that in Europe and America. For example, the construction cost of the hydrogen refueling station in Nanhai District, Foshan City, Guangdong Province is as high as 15.5 million yuan, double that of European and American countries; a tertiary hydrogen refueling station in Jiading Jiangqiao, Shanghai, has a project investment of 11 million yuan. Some insiders believe that the construction technology of domestic hydrogen refueling stations is not yet fully mature, and key equipment is still subject to imports, which has become an important reason for pushing up the construction cost of hydrogen refueling stations.

In addition to the high construction cost, the unclear approval of the approval unit and the lack of uniform standards are also a major obstacle to the development of hydrogen refueling stations. Enterprises want to get the “birth certificate” of the hydrogen refueling station, even if there is encouragement and support from local governments. I have to be self-sufficient in the unknown "levels."

"The approval procedures are complicated, and there is no fixed competent department. The specific operation is very troublesome." An insider of the hydrogen refueling station construction enterprise that did not want to be named bluntly said that the construction of the hydrogen refueling station "ideally full and realistic."

Policy "Spring Breeze" enters the industry

"Compared with 2018, the 'spring breeze' of this year's policy has already blown into the hydrogen energy industry. Therefore, I think the construction of the hydrogen refueling station will definitely be faster and smoother this year." The UNDP environment in China Project Director Zhang Weidong said in an interview with the reporter.

The reporter learned that at present, China's hydrogen energy industry has welcomed three major policies:

First, this year's "Government Work Report" clearly pointed out for the first time to promote the construction of facilities such as charging and hydrogenation.

Second, the Ministry of Finance, the Ministry of Industry and Information Technology, the Ministry of Science and Technology, and the National Development and Reform Commission jointly issued the "Financial Subsidy Policy for Further Improving the Promotion and Application of New Energy Vehicles" jointly announced at the end of March. The subsidy was transferred to support the “short board” construction and supporting operation services of the charging (hydrogenation) infrastructure.

Third, the hydrogen energy and fuel cell industries were included in the above “Draft for Comment”.

"The government's determination to promote the construction of hydrogen refueling stations has been very clear, and the examination and approval department will also be aware of it. I believe that the approval problems that are currently plaguing enterprises will be solved soon." Zhang Weidong said that in addition to the favorable policies, the current "identity" of high-pressure hydrogen is positive. From the conversion of hazardous chemicals to energy, the “running” hydrogen refueling station will also be built.

Wan Gang, vice chairman of the National Committee of the Chinese People's Political Consultative Conference and chairman of the China Association for Science and Technology, pointed out earlier that China currently restricts the use of hydrogen as a management method for the management of hazardous chemicals. In developed countries, hydrogen is used as energy management, creating a scientific and safe hydrogen filling station construction and on-board hydrogen tank technical standards and testing systems, which has effectively promoted the commercialization of fuel cell vehicles.

"Managing high-pressure hydrogen as a hazardous chemical is the fundamental reason why hydrogen fuel cell vehicles cannot be industrialized. When high-pressure hydrogen is managed as an energy source rather than a dangerous chemical, the industrialization of hydrogen fuel cell vehicles can be solved. To meet the development of hydrogen fuel cell vehicles," said Dong Yang, executive vice president of China Association of Automobile Manufacturers.

Should go out of the "sustainable" characteristics

The "Energy Conservation and New Energy Vehicle Route" led by the China Automotive Engineering Society shows that by 2020, China will build 100 hydrogen refueling stations; by 2030, this number will increase to 1,000.

Boss data released "2018-2024 China's hydrogen refueling station market status analysis and investment prospects research report" also pointed out that according to "Made in China 2025" for the fuel cell vehicle industry development plan, the goal of 2025 is to achieve the hydrogen station And other supporting infrastructure improvements." It is expected that after 2025, the domestic fuel cell vehicle industry will enter a stage of rapid development. By 2030, the annual sales volume of domestic fuel cell vehicles will reach more than one million. By then, the number of supporting hydrogen refueling stations will exceed 4,500, corresponding to the investment in hydrogen refueling stations. The scale will reach 80 billion yuan, and the investment scale of related equipment will reach 50 billion yuan.

"China has a vast hydrogen energy market, and it is not necessary to take the road that developed countries have gone or is going, but should take the road of sustainable development of hydrogen energy." Zhang Weidong said that China's industrial base and developed countries There is still a gap. If the road to developed countries is going to be very difficult, it is better to go out of their own "sustainable" characteristics in light of their own actual conditions.

"In the future, we should implement the planning of hydrogen refueling stations, and gradually accelerate the layout and network construction of hydrogen refueling stations from point to point through various forms of subsidies." Zeng Qinghong, party secretary and chairman of Guangzhou Automobile Industry Group Co., Ltd. suggested that the government should increase On the other hand, it should accelerate the development of hydrogen production industry and reduce the cost of hydrogen. At the same time, in operation, it should consider giving subsidies to the operation of hydrogen refueling stations and promoting the construction of hydrogen refueling stations so that they can better with hydrogen fuel. Automobile development is "connected."
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