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oil and gasNovember 12, 2022

McKinsey to release new insights on hydrogen production and energy transition

RIYADH: Global management consulting firm McKinsey & Co. is set to release two reports on the potential for hydrogen production and guidelines for energy transition, according to a senior company official.

Speaking to Arab News, Tarek El Sayed, a senior partner at the company, said the first would expound on the hydrogen potential in hydrocarbon-rich countries, while the second would shed light on the keep priorities for pursuing energy transition.

“Our aspiration is to be the primary private sector enabler of the transition and energy resilience globally, and we want to contribute to the debate. These reports that we issue contribute to these debates and discussions,” said El Sayed.

He added that there is a growing realization worldwide that there needs to be a shift from “only net-zero” to “energy resilience also” discussions.

However, the challenge is that countries should not abandon climate change mitigation objectives to focus on energy resilience. Nor should they let go of the fundamental needs of humanity, such as affordable and reliable energy sources to mitigate climate change.

“It’s easy to say that we want to prioritize one over the other. We must resist this urge and go into an 'and' mindset. We need to achieve both. We need to achieve energy resilience and mitigate climate change,” El Sayed said.

Several requirements need to be considered to achieve this end, such as collaboration and innovation, he pointed out.

“The key here is not only innovating but also taking these technologies to the scale needed to solve a real problem for all humanity. That scale element is going to be something critical that we all have to solve over the coming few years,” El Sayed emphasized.

The fact that the UN Climate Change Conference is taking place in the Middle East and North African region for two years in a row poses an opportunity for the territory to take a leading role on this front, he added.

The MENA region has a set of crucial advantages, including natural endowments. For instance, the region constitutes between 20 and 28 percent of the direct solar radiation globally.

Additionally, it has a unique geographical position that can link markets in the East and West, especially when exporting some low-carbon products like green and blue hydrogen. Moreover, the region also has access to expertise in capital-intensive infrastructure projects at scale, which acts as a critical element in creating new industries, El Sayed said.