Canada’s Hydrogen and Fuel Cell Sector Calls for More Action in Response to Auditor General Report
April 28, 2022
The Canadian Hydrogen and Fuel Cell Association (CHFCA) agrees with the Auditor General’s finding that more federal action is needed to realize the full greenhouse gas (GHG) reduction benefits and economic opportunity that hydrogen can offer.
Recognizing the growing importance of hydrogen to help achieve Canada’s climate goals, the Auditor General investigated the government’s projections and notes dating back to December 2020 when Natural Resources Canada’s Hydrogen Strategy for Canada issued a call for action outlining the potential for hydrogen to represent up to 30% of Canada’s energy mix by 2050, generate 190 million tonnes in GHG reductions per year, $1.5 trillion per year of economic activity and 350,000 jobs. Yet more than one year later, Environment and Climate Change Canada forecasts that, based on announced programs, Canada will fall far short of that potential.
The difference illustrates the need for the federal government to do more. The Hydrogen Strategy documented policy and funding measures that Canada must put in place to achieve the potential benefits outlined in the strategy. While there has been some progress since the release of the strategy such as the recent 2030 Emissions Reduction Plan that introduced a number of significant measures (including some that may support hydrogen), the 2022 federal budget did not allocate any specific funding to hydrogen, which is needed to help the Canadian hydrogen industry to move forward and remain competitive in international markets.
“The Auditor General report highlights the reality that the GHG benefits that can be realized from hydrogen implementations cannot be achieved without significant concerted action at every level of government including federal, provincial and municipal levels,” says Mark Kirby, President and CEO of the CHFCA. “This includes releasing policies such as hydrogen fuel and equipment carbon credits, direct investment, fast tracking of regulatory changes and project approvals to name a few of the actions required to transform the industry.”
Kirby suggests allocating at least $800 million from clean energy programs specifically towards hydrogen will send a clear message that Canada intends to remain a technical leader and a serious player in this burgeoning market. An $800 million investment will allow Canada to remain on par on a per capita basis with the United States while an investment in the range of $1.5 billion would be requiried tor Canada to catch up to other countries in Europe and Asia.
About the Canadian Hydrogen and Fuel Cell Association (CHFCA)
The Canadian Hydrogen and Fuel Cell Association (CHFCA) is a national sector association that supports industry, academia, government agencies, financial organizations and other stakeholders focused on hydrogen and fuel cell technologies and products. As the collective voice of Canada’s world-leading hydrogen and fuel cell sector, the CHFCA’s mission is to strengthen Canadian leadership, raise awareness of the benefits of the technology, and accelerate the adoption of its members’ products and services in Canada and abroad. The CHFCA currently has more than 160 members across Canada and regional branches in British Columbia, Alberta and Quebec. The CHFCA can be followed on LinkedIn at @CHFCA, Twitter at @PoweringNow and visited at www.chfca.ca.