“Hamburg as green hydrogen hub“ Interview with the new REH Committee Member Felix Faber
REH: Congratulations Mr. Faber on recently becoming Committee Member of the Cluster Renewable Energy Hamburg. Which goals have you set yourself? What do you want to achieve in the REH in the area of the newly developing hydrogen energy economy?
Felix Faber: I’m a native of Hamburg – born, bred and educated here. After many years abroad, I’m now back in a position that both motivates and humbles me: The task for Shell, as well as for the city itself, is to successfully master the energy transition. Hamburg has the best prerequisites to become the centre and hub for the green hydrogen industry. And Shell, with its ambition to become the driving and leading force in a green hydrogen energy economy, can play an important role here with the right framework conditions. Whether as a site for hydrogen production (like in Moorburg) or as a possible hub for import, storage and distribution infrastructure (like at Kattwykhafen). Last but not least, there are many potential green hydrogen customers in the city and surrounding area in industrial, logistics and transport branches. In short: The whole value chain for hydrogen can be found here. We at Shell want to use our expertise and experience as an integrated energy company to help bring the necessary stakeholders together to make this vision a reality. Being an REHH participant therefore means that, alongside a modicum of local patriotism, the main focus is on the creative drive for the good of the climate, the city and the economy.”
REH: Shell has set itself ambitious goals in the areas of sustainability and the energy transition. What exactly do these comprise of? Which projects does Shell intend to realise in Germany?
Felix Faber: “Shell wants to become a net-zero emissions energy business by 2050. In Germany, we want to be even quicker. In these times of great uncertainty, it is imperative that the long-term energy transition strategy stays on course. For us, this means significant changes. We have expanded our portfolio and made important investment decisions, like for the production of low-carbon fuels such as Bio LNG in the Energy and Chemicals Park Rheinland. A 10 MW PEM electrolyser for green hydrogen is already up and running there. Throughout Germany, we are rapidly expanding the EV charging network – at petrol stations and in public areas. And, of course, we are using our experience to further develop our hydrogen plans for transport and industry, such as with our hydrogen filling stations and electrolysis. These are but a few examples. We will keep on working, in the knowledge that business plans as they stand now will not be sufficient.”
REH: To what extent are you yourself excited about the energy transition? What are you doing in your personal life to contribute to this?
Felix Faber: “As the leader of an energy company, I have a natural drive to make Shell in Germany fit for the energy world of tomorrow. We don’t just have a responsibility towards our customers, who want to be able to rely on us in the future. We also have a responsibility towards our colleagues, who want their work to be fulfilling and worthwhile. But I also have two tremendously important reasons in my personal life: my two children, who should be able to grow up in a world worth living in. People are my driving force, along with the firm conviction that we can only master change together. This means developing new ideas and bringing them to fruition together: Sometimes this can be huge electrolysers, but it can also be very small things like reducing the amount of meat that you eat, or choosing to travel short distances by bicycle instead of car.”
REH: The energy transition is still faltering and isn’t moving forward fast enough. What would you like the government to do about this?
Felix Faber: “I would like to see more pragmatism and courage – particularly when it comes to being able to produce more green electrons and being able to implement those that are already in the system exactly there where they are needed to further develop the hydrogen energy economy. Otherwise we stand to lose valuable time on the way to net-zero emissions.”