Climate change is a reality, and the sooner all of us accept and acknowledge it, the better we can prepare ourselves for the future. Even though there have been bouts of protests and disagreements from the global political class to undermine that climate change is a hoax, it has been accepted by almost every country that humungous efforts are required to tackle this crisis. And noticeable steps are already being taken by several countries across the globe to move towards a more environment-friendly, sustainable, and green economy, an appreciable step towards ensuring that the world doesn’t collapse under the far-reaching effects of the scary carbon footprint that most global powers are generating year after year.
One such initiative that most global powers and emerging economies are adapting to is the development of a hydrogen economy, which is being touted as an excellent source of clean energy. The hydrogen economy can help several developing countries significantly reduce their carbon footprint and decarbonize several sectors like shipping, transportation, the industrial sector, and more. It not only plays a vital role in the global energy mix but also reduces the impact of global warming. Even though most developed economies are burdened with higher carbon emissions, even developing economies also need to up their carbon reduction game by adopting hydrogen energy. Two of the most active countries that are taking this initiative head-on are India and Oman, where noticeable steps are being taken to make a significant shift toward a green economy.
How Oman is positioning itself as a leading hub of green hydrogen
The world, at large, seems to be committing itself to reducing its carbon footprint. And Oman is one of them. The Sultanate has set some well-defined goals for the development of a hydrogen economy, majorly aiming at achieving heightened security of energy supplies – both locally and globally. Promoting economic diversification and maximizing in-country value are also two major goals that Oman wishes to achieve through a hydrogen economy.
Oman has an extensive presence of key potentials to produce green hydrogen in solar energy, and wind energy along with an extensive experience in energy production and export. This will come in handy for the country to position itself as a hub of a hydrogen-driven economy, especially when it comes to the operation of shipping companies and logistics companies. Realizing the importance of the magnitude of this step, the government of Oman partnered with 13 major institutions from both public and private sectors for the support and facilitation of local production, transportation, export, and utilization of green hydrogen, which is a major part of Oman’s Vision 2040.
Oman has shown a sincere sense of urgency in expediting this project. Recently, the authorities closely associated with the development of the hydrogen economy held a meeting where they emphasized fast-tracking the procedures to regulate the green hydrogen sector, implementing the right legal framework, policy development, allocation of technical sites, doing needed studies, etc. Not just that, the meeting also suggested that there should be a directorate within the Ministry of Energy that can comprehensively, and dedicatedly look at the proceedings. This clearly shows Oman’s commitment to moving towards a green economy.
Oman and India – moving ahead in the same direction of renewable energy logistics
Much like most of the world, India is also moving towards adopting a hydrogen-based economy. To implement the project and establish the nitty-gritty, India launched its National Green Hydrogen Mission a few months back that has complete government support. This initiative coincides with Oman’s move towards a hydrogen-based economy and it is not a coincidence.
India and Oman have long enjoyed strong bilateral ties and that is evident from the fact that the two countries did business worth almost USD 10 billion in 2021-2022. There are close to 6000 India-Oman joint ventures in Oman with an estimated investment of close to USD 7.5 billion. The Minister of State for External Affairs of India recently acknowledged the ties between the two countries by saying that their respective visions closely align when it comes to the development and deployment of new and renewable energy. He further mentioned that the priorities of Oman’s Vision 2040 are much the same as what India is looking at achieving.
The two countries are also looking at further strengthening their ties as Oman is being touted as one of the most important guests at the G-20 Summit to be held in India next year.
At the center of all these initiatives is the logistics industry, which is surely the mainstay for Oman in its efforts for economic diversification. The logistics companies in Oman and shipping companies in Oman have been at the forefront of realizing this dream as they have been supported well by the government in maximizing their operational capacity.
The logistics industry has identified hydrogen as the most preferred fuel of the future for its ability to control carbon emissions. Even though electric vehicles are a close second, their long-term usage is still a question mainly because of the nature of the electricity they use. In several countries, electricity is still generated by burning coal, which further adds to the carbon footprint. However, hydrogen comes with long-term profits and sustainability. All vehicles using hydrogen fuel can be refilled quickly and they add nothing to the environment as they only emit water vapor. There might be challenges in the way of adopting hydrogen, but the logistics industry will surely benefit a lot from this environment-friendly fuel.