A European Network Of Hydrogen Gas Pipelines Is Projected By 2040

A European network of hydrogen gas pipelines is projected by 2040
Image: Yeamake – Shutterstock.

A group of eleven companies has prepared a project for the creation of a European network of almost 23,000 km for the transport of hydrogen through the old continent.

A dense network of pipes that would cross the Old Continent to take European hydrogen from one country to another.

This is the ambitious infrastructure plan of a group of European gas operators. Enagás (Spain), Energinet (Denmark), Fluxys Belgium (Belgium), Gasunie (Netherlands), GRTgaz and Teréga (France), NET4GAS (Czech Republic), OGE and ONTRAS (Germany), Swedegas (Sweden) have evaluated the feasibility in the new document European Hydrogen Backbone.

According to the study, prepared with the consulting firm Guidehouse, the current gas infrastructure can be adapted at an affordable cost to the transport of hydrogen.

With the aim of creating an energy “backbone” that links industries, production plants, carbon capture and storage sites and, of course, large renewable energy plants. Through Germany, France, Italy, Spain, the Netherlands, Belgium, the Czech Republic, Denmark, Sweden and Switzerland.

The project will be carried out in stages, launching the first 6,800 km of networks by 2030, in order to connect the so-called “ hydrogen valleys ” (supply and demand centers).

By 2035, the infrastructure will begin to connect consumers in the center of the continent with regions with “ abundant resource potential for green hydrogen ,” such as offshore wind farms and photovoltaic plants. By 2040, coverage will reach 23,000 km, with a transport capacity of more than 1,130 TWh of future annual fuel demand.

75% of the work will consist of reconditioned traditional pipes and the remaining 25% new pipes. According to the preliminary study, the creation of this gigantic infrastructure dedicated to European hydrogen has an estimated cost between 27,000 and 64,000 million euros.

This paper concludes that the cost of such a European hydrogen backbone may be very modest compared to the anticipated size of the hydrogen markets. That is why we now propose to launch it as a ‘first engine’, facilitating developments on the supply and demand side. These costs are relatively limited in the general context of Europe’s energy transition and substantially lower than previous rough estimates.

It is estimated that the costs will be between 0.09-0.17 euros per kilogram of hydrogen per 1,000 km, which will allow efficient and profitable transport of fuel over long distances.

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