Hydrogen Technologies

Hydrogen is key to a decarbonised economy. The German National Hydrogen Strategy (NHS) provides an initial EUR 7 billion for investment, and the new coalition government has doubled the original NHS hydrogen electrolyser target to 10 GW by 2030.

Opportunities for foreign investors and businesses are wide-ranging. Germany’s chemical, steel, and transport industries are welcoming innovation all along the value chain. To help lower production costs, there is also major demand for technologies such as electrolysers, as well as hydrogen transport and distribution infrastructure. The hydrogen economy is in full flow.

Creating the future of sustainable energy

Germany is well-positioned to take advantage of the growing demand for hydrogen and hydrogen technologies. The element will play a major role as a clean fuel since it only emits water when burned, helping reduce carbon footprints and emissions. Over the next decade, major European and global hydrogen markets are expected to emerge. The German government is investing €9 billion in its hydrogen strategy, including €2 billion abroad.

Germany will need up to

110 TWh

of hydrogen by 2030, up from 55 TWh in 2020.

Up to 10 GW of generation capacity will initially be established by


2020 2023 2030 Phase 1 Ramp up market; harness opportunities Phase 2 Strengthen market; ramp up nationally and internationally 10 GW of generation capacity

Germany’s broad environmental strategies complement each other: producing hydrogen requires energy and the country’s expanding renewable power production is an ideal source. The country is planning to produce 28 TWh of green hydrogen a year, using 40 TWh of electricity from renewable sources. While this is a good start, many more wind and solar farms will be needed to meet the expected demand for hydrogen production in 2030. It’s a green win all around.

Focusing on innovation and supporting the green hydrogen of the future

Bringing Germany into the hydrogen age

Creating a national hydrogen value chain offers a staggering variety of opportunities in production, distribution and storage as well as the equipment needed to handle and use the green resource. Civil engineering, logistics and heavy industry are just a few of the areas waiting for solutions.

All types of transport and logistics can benefit from hydrogen innovation. Companies offering new technology will find plenty of opportunities for logistics providers, ranging from hydrogen vehicles to fleet solutions.
Experts are needed to help refit heavy German industry to meet climate goals. The use of direct reduction reactors, where coke is replaced as an energy source by hydrogen and natural gas, can slash about 80% of the steel industry’s emissions.
Existing buildings can easily be upgraded with fuel cells that combine hydrogen and oxygen to create green electricity and heat. With 83 million people living and working in 357,386 square kilometers, that’s a lot of buildings.
End-to-end hydrogen infrastructure has to be expanded significantly. Production, distribution and storage are just in their infancies.

Germany speaks hydrogen

A national network of refueling infrastructure will become necessary, and not just for road vehicles but also for rail and river traffic. Some €3.4 billion is available for refuelling and charging infrastructure from the 2030 Energy and Climate Fund (ECF) – thus, hydrogen funding can move forward.


The government is also subsidizing industrial efforts to lower CO2 emissions through the use of electrolysers, paying the difference between what a company saves by cutting carbon emissions and the construction and operation of decarbonization technologies to achieve greenhouse gas neutrality.

Green hydrogen demonstration projects will be linked to research on international supply chains. Robust and modular solutions can be tested and will include production sites that are being developed as part of the hydrogen strategy.


The National Innovation Programme for Hydrogen and Fuel Cell Technology (NIP) will continue, supporting a market for hydrogen-powered vehicles, trains and boats. Money is also available from the ECF for buying vehicles with alternative drivetrains, including utility vehicles (€900 million) and buses (€600 million).

Existing and new infrastructure

The operators of the country’s national gas grid already have a plan for a 6,000 km hydrogen network. The concept leverages decades of experience on behalf of the operators and can often call on twin pipelines, with one side moving gas and the other hydrogen. Pipelines that are no longer needed can also be repurposed for hydrogen.

Energy-optimized quarters Sector coupling andhydrogen technologies

Real-world laboratories

A network of laboratories around Germany isn’t just looking for novel technologies concerning hydrogen and fuel cells; the labs are testing them in real-world situations on an industrial scale, whether locally, regionally or even nationally. The knowledge gained in these real-world situations help Germany to plan its hydrogen future and focus on ideas that make sense both in the lab and in real use.

Germany’s track record as a leader in environmental protection and climate-friendly technology is unrivalled. But the world is entering a new chapter as maturing technologies combine with more efficient technologies to solve industrial-sized problems. The government is ready to support innovation efforts and collaborations with international companies looking to thrive in one of the world’s most advanced and robust markets. Get in touch to learn more.

Find out how to make Germany’s green hydrogen sector work for you in the HY-5 digital briefings.



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