Plans for 50,000 hydrogen-powered taxis in Paris


The association for European grid companies has revealed details of a €1 billion plan to install 11 GWh of hydrogen energy storage capacity around Paris by 2030 as part of a bid to power a fleet of 50,000 taxis using electrolysis.

The project was outlined in a draft version of the ten-year plan produced biennially by the European Network of Transmission System Operators for Electricity (ENTSO-E), which is undergoing consultation until January 4.

The project envisages the construction of ten locations around the French capital, each of which would feature 20-50 MW of grid-connected electrolyzer capacity and 100-500 MWh of hydrogen gas storage capacity.

ENTSO-E's summary of the scheme stated the hydrogen would be generated from electrolysis powered by “decarbonized and green electricity sources,” wording which suggests a role for nuclear or even for thermal power generated in carbon capture and storage facilities.

Under the project, proposed by Parisian transport company Société du Taxi Électrique Parisien, a fleet of 50,000 taxis or “taxi-like vehicles” would be converted to fuel-cell electric vehicles serving the capital and would offer a total 10 GWh of electric storage and grid re-electrification potential of 5 GWh.

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The EU transmission system operator body estimates the project, which has a commissioning date of 2022, would require capital of €1 billion and have operating costs of €15 million, and could prevent the curtailment of up to 48 GWh of renewable energy generation by 2030.

The project is one of 26 energy storage schemes identified by ENTSO-E in its latest ten-year plan, alongside seven pumped-hydro facilities in Spain – including one which generates and stores energy while cleaning toxic mine water; two in each of Germany, Ireland and the U.K. and others in Greece, Austria, Belgium, Bulgaria, Estonia and Lithuania. Two projects concern a compressed air energy storage project in the Netherlands which will involve underground storage in salt caverns and there are also compressed air facilities planned in the U.K. and Denmark. The storage plans are rounded out by the planned 250 MW lithium-ion battery at Ptolemaida, in Greece, and an up-to-384 MW facility in Slovakia touted as “the largest battery installation in Europe.”

The ENTSO-E strategy document also contains details of 154 electric transmission projects.

This copy was amended on 16/11/20 to indicate the project has been proposed by Société du Taxi Électrique Parisien, rather than Ingenieria Pontificia, as previously reported.

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