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Tony Pan CERAWeek Chat

Hear from Modern Hydrogen Co-Founder and CEO Tony Pan about the implications of 45V.

Tony Pan CERAWeek Chat

Tony: "Hi, I'm Tony Pan, the CEO and co-founder of Modern Hydrogen. We are a Clean Energy company. Our company produces clean hydrogen by decarbonizing natural gas at the point of use. Then we take the captured solid carbon and actually sell it as a high-value material to decarbonize the built environment.

Roxana: Thank you so much, Tony. Can you tell us a little bit more about how 45V and the three pillars affect your business case?"

Tony: "Actually, in the very short term, it is very good for our company since they have made making renewable electricity harder, and we are one of the only solutions in the world that can produce clean hydrogen without a reliance on renewable electricity. Nevertheless, I still don't like the ruling because we believe that we want to be in a very large industry, even if it means more competitors. What this ruling has done is it really hurts the general growth of the hydrogen industry. I'd rather be one of the top four companies in a rising tide than the number one winner in a much smaller industry."

Roxana: "That is a very important point. How do you think this also affects the US and its competitive advantage in the world?"

Tony: "This will be a longer answer, but let's take batteries and electric vehicles. China was really smart; they are now the largest car exporter in the whole world. Japan and Germany are shivering in their feet. How did China do that? They were very explicit about their policy; they wanted a car industry. When they started 15 years ago, if they built the existing technology, internal combustion engines, they knew they had to immediately compete with 15-20 companies that already existed. So, literally, they had the saying, I'm Taiwanese, I speak Chinese, 'one chra,' meaning that if you want to overtake someone on the road, you have to switch lanes. So, they went directly to invest in electric, the next-generation technology, electric cars, to be of the future. They were doing this in open sight, and now again, the biggest car exporter in the world. Frankly, at this point, China is already the largest solar and wind manufacturing powerhouse of the world. So, the US can either decide to compete with that and ski uphill, or we can decide to invest in the next-generation clean energy technologies like hydrogen, which was the intent of the Inflation Reduction Act. And now we're ourselves in a foot."

Roxana: "Do you have one to two key points that you would like to recommend to the US government to get this right, support hydrogen growth?"

Tony: "And actually, I would say like Congress already got it right when it wrote the Inflation Reduction Act, especially with respect to clean hydrogen. They were smart; they made it exactly what you want from an environmental perspective. They said the subsidy will just depend on how clean you are. We're not going to pick any technology; let everybody compete in a free marketplace; we're just going to measure your CO2 results. That was the right way to do it, and that was the intent of the law. We just need to stick with the intent of the law when we implement it. So, really, the recommendation is to the Biden Administration, specifically the White House, and the IRS."

Tony: "Yeah, I think they're trying to make many people happy; they don't have an easy job, but let's play the game that is required for the US to succeed and actually make the transition happen in the next 10 and 20 years instead of being too shortsighted."

Roxana: "Tony, thank you so much for your insights. I really appreciate it."

Tony: "No problem. Have a great week."

Watch the interview below:

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