In this study, the EWI investigates Economies of Scale (EoS) in the hydrogen economy. For this purpose, the term EoS is first analyzed and defined from an economic perspective, and the main drivers for EoS are discussed. Then, the general findings from the economic theory on EoS are applied to the hydrogen value chain. The study was prepared within the framework of the Hydrogen Research Program, funded by the “Förderinitiative Wasserstoff” of the Gesellschaft zur Förderung des Energiewirtschaftlichen Instituts an der Universität zu Köln e. V.
The study distinguishes between internal and external EoS. Internal EoS describes the structures within a company that leads to a reduction in unit costs due to increased production volumes. Internal EoS can be expected in the production and transport of hydrogen and the production of electrolyzers, albeit to varying degrees. In contrast, production costs decrease in the wake of external EoS for all players within an industry as the industry grows. It has been shown that there is potential for external EoS in all parts of the hydrogen value chain. In the case of external EoS, the government can support EoS, e.g., through policy measures and an appropriate regulatory framework.