The Hydrogen Stream: Germany, Italy plan hydrogen pipeline to North Africa


Germany and Italy have agreed to expand their energy ties with a hydrogen pipeline across the Alps to transporting gases, mainly hydrogen, from North Africa to Northern Europe. “It is particularly important to expand the Southern Corridor for gas and hydrogen,” said German Chancellor Olaf Scholz, during a press conference this week with Italian Prime Minister Giorgia Meloni. “With a new pipeline across the Alps, we want to increase the security of supply of both our countries.” The corridor will expand cross-border gas pipeline infrastructure and allow Europe to import 10 million tons of hydrogen by 2030.

The Danish Energy Agency has rejected Plug Power’s bid for the first Power-to-X tender in Danish history due to the US company's failure to meet contractual obligations to provide a bank guarantee. “This means that Plug Power is no longer among the winners of the PtX tender,” said the Danish Energy Agency. The other winners are still European Energy/Vindtestcenter Måde K/S, European Energy/Padborg PtX ApS, Electrochaea/Biocat Roslev, and European Energy/Kassø PtX Expansion ApS. The four winning projects have still been awarded their entire tender. “The Danish Energy Agency does not believe that the new decision will affect when contracts will be signed with the winners, just as it is not expected to affect the time horizon for when the plants will be ready,” the agency said. The total budget of the tender, announced in April, is DKK 1.32 billion ($190 million) in 2023 prices.  

As a result, Danish authorities announced increased public support for the marginal winner of the Danish Power-to-X tender, Everfuel and Hy24 A/S JV. “The increased offer has a value of DKK 211 million ($30,9 million),” said Everfuel in an emailed note, explaining that the Danish Power-to-X tender’s built-in subsidy is computed per kilogram of green hydrogen produced. The subsidy will run for ten years. “The JV will provide further information if it decides to accept the support offer,” said Everfuel. The marginal bidder still cannot be offered the full bid, being offered only the remaining amount of the total budget. 

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Masdar has partnered with Emirates Steel Arkan to develop a green hydrogen project to decarbonize the steel sector in the United Arab Emirates. “The pilot project is the first-of-its-kind in the Middle East and North African region,” said Masdar. “Located in the Emirates Steel Arkan production facilities at the Industrial City of Abu Dhabi, the project is currently in the installation phase.” The companies plan to commission the facility in early 2024. Abu Dhabi-based Masdar will have a strong presence at COP28 in Expo City, Dubai.

Airbus’ Blue Condor has made its first hydrogen-powered flight over the US state of Nevada. The flight was the company’s first to use hydrogen as the sole fuel source, and it kicked off a test campaign that will conclude in a contrail-measuring mission in early 2024. Airbus said it will monitor the composition of the hydrogen contrails of the modified glider to investigate the environmental impact of hydrogen aviation. 

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