EUROPE
Central Europeans to boost hydrogen grid

Gas transmission system operators (TSOs) from Slovakia, Romania, Hungary, and Poland agreed to a strategic partnership to develop the region’s hydrogen grid. According to the partnership agreement, the companies will also cooperate on decarbonisation, developing green gases, and exploring CO2’s possibilities.

The partnership was initiated by Romanian TSO Transgaz and involves Poland’s Gaz-System, Slovakia’s Eustream and Hungaria’s FGSZ. Four TSOs have already signed the memorandum of understanding, inviting others in the region to join.

According to the Eustream, cooperation would allow the initiation of joint work in several fields.

Aims include sharing best practices in hydrogen and CO2 transportation, the decarbonisation of operations, and hydrogen production. The cooperation agreement also seeks to identify hydrogen markets and applications in various industries and draft a relevant regulatory framework.

EURACTIV Slovakia understands that there will also be cooperation in preparing a feasibility study.

“The Memorandum of Understanding greatly supports all initiatives that foster the development of the hydrogen value chain in the Central European region and bring attention to regional characteristics for a uniform evolution of the hydrogen grid in the European Union,” a Eustream press release states.

Eustream’s activities suggest the company is particularly interested in exploring hydrogen use.

In September last year, it signed a Memorandum of Understanding with EP Infrastructure, NAFTA and RWE Supply & Trading, which looks into the potential development of so-called blue hydrogen production in Slovakia.

Hydrogen is expected to play an important role in achieving EU objectives to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by 55% by 2035.

In Slovakia, hydrogen is strongly supported by Economy Minister Richard Sulík (SaS), who promised €1 billion of investment into hydrogen. However, approximately €200 million is meant to be spent on exploring hydrogen use in the transport sector.

According to Patrik Križanský, director of the Slovak Electric Vehicle Association (SEVA), hydrogen has great potential in the decarbonisation of industry, but not in the transport sector as it cannot compete with battery electric vehicles. This is also what the Hydrogen Strategy For Climate-Neutral Europe suggests.

Source: Euractiv.com

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