HIAlba-IDEA: think tank launches in Scotland to deploy CSIRO technology, become green energy exporter

NEWS BRIEF: A new policy think tank was launched last month that will focus on “why and how Scotland could benefit from being an early adopter of renewable hydrogen.” Its “core starting point” is CSIRO’s hydrogen-purification membrane, which enables ammonia to be used and exported as an efficient hydrogen carrier; for this use, green ammonia would be produced from offshore wind. According to the founders, this could lead to “Scotland becoming one of the largest global energy exporters in the world … it could be the country’s main source of energy and create a knowledge economy.”

The founders of HIAlba-IDEA are Ronald MacDonald, Professor in Macroeconomics and International Finance at the Adam Smith Business School at the University of Glasgow, and Donald MacRae, formerly director of corporate planning at CSIRO.

Scotland could maximise the benefits of decarbonising its economy by generating a flow of renewable energy that not only matches the UK-based flow of oil & gas from the North Sea but exceeds it to the extent that it becomes one of the largest global energy exporters in the world …

It would do so through the low-cost extraction of hydrogen from renewably generated ammonia used as a storage medium and carrier of hydrogen. And in so doing blaze trails in supporting the global community to adapt decisively to containing the adverse impacts of climate change at globally significant levels.
HIAlba-IDEA Overview, March 2019

The launch of HIAlba-IDEA was announced on March 22 by the University of Glasgow.

Professor Ronald MacDonald said: “This new technology could be a game changer for the Scottish economy in many ways, not least in moving us to a high productivity, high value economy with all that implies for the provision of well paid jobs and the provision of public services. I believe it is critically important that Scotland becomes a first mover in this new technology and its application so that it can capture the wider knowledge and finance related aspects.”
Embracing New Energy Could Establish Scotland as a Global Supplier, University of Glasgow announcement, 03/22/2019

RELATED LINKS: The full sequence of Ammonia Energy articles on CSIRO’s hydrogen purification membrane can be found at https://www.ammoniaenergy.org/tag/csiro/.

SOURCES: University of Glasgow announcement, Embracing New Energy Could Establish Scotland as a Global Supplier, 03/22/2019; and website for the HIAlba-IDEA think tank, accessed April 2019.

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