May 2021 global hydrogen summary

2 Min Read

Compiled 03/06/2021

Subdued gains in European electricity contracts contrasted with large spikes in North American power futures with California and Texas seeing 40% rises in just a few days. Global gas prices saw modest gains with grey hydrogen remaining little changed across the board.

Despite a slowdown in the rise of EUA futures prices, they register their seventh positive month in a row. Blue hydrogen looks like the more attractive option for natural gas derived hydrogen in Europe.

Globally, the continually changing price differentials between cost benchmarks emphasises the importance of keeping a close eye on hydrogen production cost movements.


UK power and natural gas prices saw some volatility during May but ended the month only slightly higher. As a result, hydrogen costs ended the month mostly flat.

The rise in EUA futures prices slowed but still saw a seventh consecutive positive month, consolidating above €50/tonne. To an increasing degree, blue hydrogen can now be cheaper to produce than grey, even when accounting for significantly higher capex.


With notable volatility throughout May, German energy prices ended the month almost 10% higher across the board. German hydrogen costs continued to touch new highs for the year on the back of these rising feedstock costs.

The Netherlands

Dutch energy prices mostly mirrored Germany. There is now very little discrepancy between the two regions for all hydrogen benchmarks as electricity and natural gas prices converge.


Henry Hub ended the month with little change, with Texas grey hydrogen remaining in a range established at the end of 2020.

Green hydrogen costs rose dramatically in the final days of May as electricity contracts gained nearly 40%, a rise more dramatic than during the energy crisis in mid-February.


Mirroring Texas, California power prices shot up at the end of May seeing green hydrogen benchmarks consolidate above $4.


As natural gas costs receded, Alberta's grey hydrogen cost benchmark dipped back below c$1.

A spike in electricity prices at the end of May, though less pronounced than in California and Texas, pushed green hydrogen benchmarks higher by more than 20% to over c$7.

Cost assessment figures have been redacted.

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Information correct at time of writing.

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