Eneco becomes partner in green hydrogen consortium NortH2
Eneco is joining the green hydrogen consortium NortH2 as an investment partner. Green hydrogen is an important step in the implementation of Eneco's One Planet Plan, which is aiming at climate neutrality by 2035 for Eneco and its customers. Part of the plan is phasing out natural gas at customers and in electricity and heat production. Eneco plans to make further investments in green hydrogen, alongside NortH2. NortH2 will enable hydrogen to be made available on a large scale in the Netherlands in the future.
As Tempelman, CEO of Eneco explains: ”Eneco is striving to be climate neutral by 2035. In order to achieve this goal, in addition to large-scale electrification, we are going to invest in the production and supply of green hydrogen. Our participation in NortH2 is an important step, as this project gives us the opportunity to rapidly scale up the production of green hydrogen in the Netherlands in collaboration with our consortium partners.”
Eneco believes NortH2 will provide plenty of opportunities for making its production and supply to industrial customers more sustainable. NortH2 wants to make a substantial contribution to the Dutch and European climate goals through the rapid development of an integrated hydrogen chain that includes offshore wind energy and the production and storage of green hydrogen. The hydrogen will be produced for industrial sectors that are difficult to electrify, or for which hydrogen is a necessary raw material. NortH2’s aim is to have up to 4GW of electrolysers and matching offshore wind capacity available by 2030. On a project base, this will reduce the use of natural gas by around 1.5 billion cubic meters per year. Depending on the application, green hydrogen will lower CO2 emissions by some 2.9 to 3.6 megaton annually. NortH2 will continue to grow towards the production of 1 million ton of green hydrogen per year by 2040.
NortH2 has recently completed the second phase of the feasibility study, which shows that an integrated approach — from offshore wind farms, production, storage and distribution to ultimately the use of the green hydrogen — is technically and economically feasible. One other requirement is for the government to create the right policy framework.
During the current study phase, NortH2 consists of Shell, Equinor, RWE and Gasunie with Groningen Seaports as support partners and is now joined by Eneco. Shell, Equinor, RWE and Eneco, with the support of Groningen Seaports, intend to continue to work together after the study phase and jointly produce a large-scale supply of green hydrogen for industry.
It has also been announced today that NortH2 has entered into a collaboration agreement with OCI N.V. for the integrated development of 1GW of green ammonia and green methanol value chains based on green hydrogen supplied by NortH2.
The NortH2 partners are prepared to make significant investments. For Eneco this involves hundreds of millions of euros. In order to be able to take a concrete investment decision and to achieve the Dutch and European climate and hydrogen targets for 2030, a number of important policy conditions must be met in the short term:
- A roll-out planning for combined tenders concerning ‘wind energy for the production of hydrogen’ on a sufficiently large scale. This will provide more security for investors and accelerate cost reductions.
- Speed in the installation of landfall cables and infrastructure for electricity generated by wind farms.
- Swift practical implementation of policy aimed at helping industry to deploy hydrogen (such as the 'customised agreements' from the coalition agreement and the hydrogen measures in the European Fit-for-55 package).
Eneco and green hydrogen
In addition to the investment in NortH2, Eneco is working on the development of other green hydrogen projects. The goal is a green hydrogen portfolio of 1.5 to 2 GW. About half of the projects focus on the production of green hydrogen for industrial customers. The other half focus on green hydrogen for other sectors such as the built environment.