The research company Freedonia Group predicts that worldwide hydrogen demand will continue to climb, growing at a 3.4 percent annual pace through 2013.
Oftentimes the term “hydrogen economy” is associated with emerging energy and transportation technologies, but a new report from Freedonia, World Hydrogen, indicates the growth primarily is being driven by petroleum refining enterprises that require more hydrogen to produce low-sulfur fuels. Other big drivers are chemical, semiconductor, float glass, metal components and food industries (remember the margarine commercials referring to hydrogenation?). The report predicts that 475 billion cubic meters will be required in 2013.
Geographically speaking, although North America currently is the world’s largest hydrogen consumer, Freedonia says trends indicate that the Asia/Pacific region will jump from third to first place in the consumption roster. In fact, consumption in the Asia/Pacific region, according to the report, is growing 300 percent faster than in North America.
The 336-page World Hydrogen report is available for $5,300 from Freedonia.