Sustainable Hydrogen Fuels versus Fossil Fuels for Trucking, Shipping and Aviation: A Dynamic Cost Model

Jonas Martin, Anne Neumann, and Anders Ødegård

July 2022

Potential decarbonization of the global trucking, shipping and aviation sectors by 2050 could be achieved by replacing fossil fuels with sustainable hydrogen fuels (SHF). We develop a dynamic cost model and apply it to Norway, considered an early adopter of sustainable transport. Modelling the value chains from electricity and fuel production to fuel consumption for long-haul trucking, short-sea shipping and short-haul aviation allows us to compare the changes in competition from SHF versus fossil fuel use. Outlining the total costs of ownership indicates that the optimal SHF choices are hydrogen for long-haul trucking, ammonia for short-sea shipping, and hydrocarbon eFuel for short-haul aviation. Although the optimal SHF choices do not change the cost rankings across the freight transport modes, short-sea shipping has the strongest transport cost sensitivity (+232%, 2020; +41%, 2050), followed by short-haul aviation (+138%, 2020; +36%, 2050) and long-haul trucking (+66%, 2020; +8%, 2050).