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

A group of eleven companies has prepared a project to create a European network of nearly 23,000 km for the transport of hydrogen across the old continent.

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

It 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) assessed the feasibility in the new document European hydrogen skeleton.

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

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

The project will be carried out in stages, putting in place the first 6,800 km of networks by 2030, in order to connect what is called “hydrogen valleys»(Supply and demand centers).

By 2035, infrastructure will begin to connect consumers from the center of the continent to regions with “abundant resource potential for green hydrogen“Like offshore wind farms and photovoltaic power plants. By 2040, coverage will reach 23,000 km, with a transmission capacity of over 1,130 TWh of future annual fuel demand.

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

This article concludes that the cost of such a European hydrogen backbone can be very modest compared to the expected size of the hydrogen markets. This is why we are now proposing to launch it as a “first driver”, facilitating developments on the supply and demand side. These costs are relatively limited in the general context of Europe’s energy transition and significantly lower than previous rough estimates.

It is estimated that the costs will be between 0.09 and 0.17 euro per kilogram of hydrogen per 1000 km, which will allow efficient and cost effective transport of fuel over long distances.