China’s future green hydrogen: Platinum circularity for sustainability

In 2060, China is focused on a hydrogen-fuel future as part of its strategy to achieve national energy security and carbon neutrality. According to a study by Wang et al, hydrogen is expected to contribute over 10% of China’s energy supply by 2050, with more than 50 large-scale hydrogen projects in the pipeline.

Platinum, a crucial element in the hydrogen value chain, is explored as a potential limiting factor in the expansion of hydrogen fuel use in China. Wei-Qiang Chen and his team model various scenarios for China’s hydrogen industry development and highlight the importance of platinum in these plans.

In one scenario aiming for carbon neutrality by 2060, China’s platinum demand related to hydrogen could rise from 0.6 tons per year in 2020 to 242 tons per year in 2060. This increase would necessitate a significant boost in the country’s platinum supply. With 95% of platinum currently sourced from a few countries, including South Africa, Russia, and Zimbabwe, potential risks such as supply chain disruptions, labor issues, and price fluctuations are a concern.

To address these challenges, the study suggests that China should focus on enhancing international cooperation to secure platinum mineral supply and consider implementing a platinum circular economy approach in its hydrogen strategies.

For more information on this study, refer to the publication by Wang et al in PNAS Nexus (2024) with DOI: 10.1093/pnasnexus/pgae172.

Source: PNAS Nexus – “Platinum circularity underpins China’s green hydrogen future” (2024, May 15) available at


Tech aficionado exploring gadgets, blockchain, and coding.