Issue Brief

Hydrogen Hubs Issue Brief



NCEL Point of Contact

Ava Gallo
Climate and Energy Program Manager



The Biden Administration has selected seven regional hubs to each receive approximately $1 billion of federal funding to build a hydrogen hub. Hydrogen hubs are a network of producers, consumers, and needed infrastructure to streamline clean hydrogen as a climate solution for hard to decarbonize sectors like heavy-duty transportation and industry.

Characteristics of Clean and Equitable Hubs

  • Fulfill the 3 pillars of new supply, hourly matching, and geographic deliverability.
  • Prioritize hard to electrify sectors.
  • Mitigation of NOx emissions created during hydrogen combustion.
  • Robust, transparent, and collaborative engagement, early and frequently, with impacted communities.
  • Creating robust Community Benefit Programs (CPBs) while mitigating potential negative impacts on those communities.

Potential Negative Impacts of Hubs

  • Over-reliance on fossil fuel-derived hydrogen with carbon capture and storage (CCS).
  • Hydrogen production powered by existing clean energy sources may lead to increased grid emissions and fossil-fueled electricity. 
  • Use of hydrogen in wasteful end uses which have far lower-cost and more efficient clean energy alternatives.
  • Hubs whose CBPs fail to identify all impacted communities, the potential negative impacts of the projects, and how they will address and mitigate those impacts. 
  • Lack of tracking of project benefits.
  • Lack of community engagement.

What State Legislators Can Do

The selected hubs are now in negotiations with the Department of Energy over the terms of their funding agreement before money is released for phase, which is a planning phase–now is the time to engage. 

  • Call on your Governor to release more information to ensure hub plans align with climate goals, introduce legislation creating incentive programs that result in better guardrails and standards. 
  • Require robust engagement and ban hydrogen blending into gas distribution networks. Push for a workforce development model that will prioritize environmental justice communities. 
  • Advocate for accurate and climate-aligned rules for the federal 45V tax credit

Contact Climate & Energy Manager, Ava Gallo, for more information on how to stay engaged.


NCEL Resources

Online Resources

NCEL Issue Area: Emerging Energy Technologies

NCEL's issue area page on emerging energy technologies.

Go to resource
NCEL Blog: Hydrogen Hubs

This blog highlights the selection of seven regional hydrogen hubs and what comes next.

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State Legislators Call for Stricter Criteria in Usage of Hydrogen Tax Credit

130 state legislators from 36 states and territories submitted a letter urging for restrictions on the federal hydrogen tax credit created by the Inflation Reduction Act.

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