Strengthening Youth for Green Hydrogen
Why do we need to strengthen youth participation in Green Hydrogen?
By Sailesh Singhal and Ravi Karkara
Green hydrogenis defined as hydrogen produced by splitting water into hydrogen and oxygen using renewable electricity through a process called electrolysis. This results in very low or zero carbon emissions. Emerging green hydrogen strategies and policies differ widely on the definition of “renewable energy”, the boundaries of the carbon accounting system, the emission thresholds at which hydrogen is considered green, and the feedstocks and production technologies deployed. This lack of standardisation is undermining efforts to accelerate the use of green hydrogen.
Young leaders from around the world issued a clear call to action to reset the energy transition, and they urged more young people to join them in demanding bolder clean energy and climate progress Inequalities and discrimination faced by young people in the renewable energy workforce prevent too many of them from realizing their full potential as agents of change. This means that the sector is missing out on benefiting from an entire talent pool. To unlock jobs and economic opportunities in the renewable energy sector, young people need a formal seat at the energy transition decision-making table. Inclusion of young people in the energy transition will not be achieved through a “business as usual approach”. There are serious intersectional equity concerns that need to be addressed in the energy industry at large as we work to change the system. “The clean energy economy workforce is older, dominated by male workers, and lacks racial diversity when compared to all occupations nationally. Fewer than 20 percent of workers in the clean energy production and energy efficiency sectors are women, while black workers fill less than ten percent of these sector’s jobs,” states a recent Brookings Institute report.
The need to involve young women and young men in Green Hydrogen is immediate. The first ever Green Hydrogen Global Assembly was held in Barcelona on 17-18 May 2022. This unprecedented event brought together global leaders from government, industry and civil society to strategize on the role of green hydrogen in addressing the dual challenges of climate change and energy security.
Given that young people are key in the green hydrogen revolution and are the future stakeholders in this industry, the need to involve these young women and men in the green hydrogen sector was highlighted at the assembly. The world’s first Youth Declaration on Green Hydrogen which puts forward youth-led solutions was presented at the GH2 assembly. The declaration proposed youth interventions in the areas of advocacy, capacity building, entrepreneurship, and youth-led innovations. Strengthening young women’s participation, increased involvement in impact measurements, and inclusion of marginalised youth in green hydrogen initiatives was also mentioned.
The declaration put youth at the forefront of the green hydrogen transition and is set to be presented at COP27 later this year. Young people from Europe, Latin America, India and South Africa joined in the consultation to prepare the working document.
Here are the highlights of the Youth for Green Hydrogen Deceleration:
- Awareness: Investing in youth leadership in creating awareness on Green Hydrogen is critical to bring a paradigm shift in energy consumption. Work through public private partnerships to carry out awareness on Green Hydrogen.
- Advocacy: Youth lead a demand for creation of a Global Green Hydrogen Day. Encourage youth engagement in GH2 polices and implementations. Create a Global Task Force of young women and men to work closely with Green Hydrogen Global Assembly.
- Capacity Building: Develop online initiatives to build capacity of young people to participate and promote a culture of green hydrogen.
- Youth Entrepreneurs: Invest in youth entrepreneurship & entrepreneurial initiatives. Partners with investors and market leaders to support GH2 incubators for young women and men entrepreneurs.
- Youth Led Innovation: Nestle youth led innovation to localize the production and use of GH2. Support youth to create low cost innovation in advancing production and use of GH2.
- Young Women Leaders: Strengthen Young women leadership in Green Hydrogen at local to global levels
- Support and include marginalized and indigenous youth in Green Hydrogen initiatives
- Youth involved in impact measurement of Green Hydrogen economy. Youth should evaluate the impact of Green Hydrogen in societies.
- Create a Global Green Hydrogen Youth Fund to encourage youth led initiatives to rapidly increase support for green hydrogen production and use in countries and emerging markets.
Inter-generational partnerships are key for mainstreaming Green Hydrogen in everyday life. Green Hydrogen economy can only be created if all ages and diversities work together for a Green Today and a Green Tomorrow.
Attached Link or the Youth for Green Hydrogen Declaration at the first ever Green Hydrogen Global Assembly was held in Barcelona on 17-18 May 2022.