The H2Med project, which will be the first “great hydrogen corridor in the European Union” and will interconnect Portugal and Spain with France to transport this energy vector, will have a total cost of around 2,850 million euros.
Specifically, of this total amount, some 2,500 million euros will correspond to the new submarine hydroduct to be built between Barcelona and Marseille, as announced by the President of the Spanish Government, Pedro Sanchez, who indicated that he aspires to attract European funds to finance the 50 % of cost.
In addition, another close to 350 million euros will have to be added for the section between Celorico da Beira and Zamora, which corresponds to the part of the project between Portugal and Spain.
In a joint declaration in Alicante within the framework of the IX Euro-Mediterranean Summit EU-MED9, Sanchez, the French President, Emmanuel Macron, and the Prime Minister of Portugal, Antonio Costa, who had the support of the EC President’s project , Ursula von der Leyen, highlighted that H2Med is “an example of how three countries give a supportive and committed response to the energy crisis”.
The President of the Spanish Government affirmed that the objective is for the infrastructure to be “completed and operational” in 2030 and allow the export of 10% of the total – some 2 million tons per year – of the renewable hydrogen consumption target estimated by the European Union, which amounts to about 20 million tons between own production (10 million tons) and imports (10 million tons).
In addition, Sanchez emphasized that this agreement represents “a step forward” towards European energy sufficiency, once the interconnection project with France was unblocked in October, after burying the previous MidCat project, after “Putin’s blackmail and the war from Ukraine”.
Likewise, he highlighted Spain’s commitment to Europe’s commitment to renewable hydrogen, where the country aspires to “be a European and world benchmark.
For his part, Von der Leyen showed the full support of the European Union for a project based on hydrogen, which “is going to change the history of Europe and is going to be a crucial part of our energy system”.
“The project is clearly going in the right direction, and I welcome you to apply for community funds. This is only the beginning, but it is a very promising beginning. The Iberian Peninsula will be one of the great energy hubs of the European Union “.
Meanwhile, the French president, Emmanuel Macron, who insisted on the need for the hydrogen corridor to be “considered a project of common interest and to be able to aspire to these European funds, assured that H2Med is “totally consistent” with France’s strategy of “reducing emissions and progressively abandoning fossil fuels”, as well as the objectives of industrialization and energy sovereignty and autonomy.
For his part, the Portuguese Prime Minister, Antonio Costa, warned that this project will allow Europe to “change the trend” and “strengthen” the position of the Iberian Peninsula as producers and exporters of energy to the rest of Europe. “It is a very good example of how three states know how to cooperate with each other to benefit the whole of the EU,” he added.
PRESENTATION TO THE CALL FOR HELP BEFORE DECEMBER 15.
With this launch of the project, the three countries will present it to the call for aid from the European Commission, whose deadline ends on December 15, to be considered a project of common interest (PCI), which will allow the runner to choose to community financing instruments such as the ‘Connecting Europe’ Facility.
In this sense, Sanchez stressed that the objective is to finance with this European money up to 50% of the cost of the submarine connection project with Marseille, which will thus focus on green hydrogen, thus ruling out its operability to transport natural gas.
TWO LINES, ONE FROM PORTUGAL TO SPAIN AND ANOTHER SUBMARINE TO FRANCE.
The H2Med will consist of two routes: the one that will interconnect Portugal with Spain (Celorico-Zamora) and the new submarine hydroduct between Barcelona and Marseille (BarMar) to link the Iberian Peninsula with France.
The first stretch between Celorico and Zamora, which will cost around 350 million euros, is expected to be completed within a period of around four years, including around 26 months to obtain the relevant authorizations.
In the case of the BarMar, its estimated execution period will be 56 months, including 26 months to obtain permits, and construction is scheduled to begin in 2025.
The operators of the gas transportation network (TSO) from the three countries participate in the green hydrogen corridor project: Enagas (Spain), REN (Portugal) and GRTGaz and Terega, for France.
For the submarine infrastructure through the Mediterranean between Spain and France, three possible routes were considered, although the one considered most optimal is a route with a maximum length of 455 kilometers, with a maximum depth of 2,557 meters.
Spain has made the promotion of renewable hydrogen a country strategy. In fact, the roadmap for 2030 provides for these 4 gigawatts (GW) of installed power from electrolyzers, that a minimum of 25% of hydrogen consumption by industry must be renewable and the implementation of hydrogen stations, trains and heavy transport vehicles propelled by this product, although these objectives will foreseeably be raised in the update of the PNIEC in which the Government works.
A sample of the existing interest in ‘green’ hydrogen is the existing race for all the large energy companies in the country for the development of projects.
Thus, last week Cepsa carried out the launch of its plans to build the largest green hydrogen project in Europe in Andalusia with an investment of 3,000 million euros.
This Andalusian Valley of Green Hydrogen will involve the start-up of two new plants, with a capacity of 2 GW and a production of up to 300,000 tons of green hydrogen, in its Campo de Gibraltar (Cadiz) and Palos de la Frontera (Cadiz) Energy Parks. Huelva). In addition, the project will be accompanied by an additional investment of 2,000 million euros destined to the development of a portfolio of projects of 3 GW of wind and solar energy to generate renewable electricity.
Meanwhile, Repsol leads the Shyne project, in which it plans to allocate investments of more than 2,200 million euros, which has goals to install 500 MW in 2025 and 2 GW in 2030.
In addition, this project aims to create an ecosystem that connects the large regional initiatives around hydrogen that are already being launched, such as the Basque Hydrogen Corridor (BH2C), the Hydrogen Valley of Catalonia and the Hydrogen Valley of Murcia region. Along with Repsol, Shyne also includes companies such as Enagas, Navantia, Sidenor and Tubacex, among others.
For its part, Iberdrola launched together with Fertiberia a comprehensive project that includes the development of 800 MW of green hydrogen with an investment of 1,800 million euros until 2027.
In addition, the electric company has been awarded the construction and operation for 10 years of a hydrogen generator that will be used by the buses of Transports Metropolitans de Barcelona (TMB) and other fleets and industries in the Zona Franca industrial estate.
Endesa will also develop green hydrogen generation facilities in As Pontes (Galicia), thanks to the project that it is promoting for up to 100 MW of electrolyser.
Similarly, Naturgy has an alliance with Exolum, called ‘Win4H2’ to develop a network of 50 hydrogen plants throughout the country.