A First for France: Corridor H2 Aims to Replace Fossil Fuels by Green Hydrogen for Trucks, Refrigeration units and Coaches

By October 19, 2021 3   min read  (496 words)

October 19, 2021 |

Fuel Cells Works, The Energy Sector that Includes Hydrogen will Benefit from the France 2030 Plan

Corridor H2 Occitanie, to replace use of fossil fuels by green hydrogen for trucks, refrigeration units and coaches, France.

The regional project “Corridor H2 Occitanie”, supported by Europe, aims to replace the use of fossil fuels by green hydrogen for trucks, refrigeration units and coaches. A first in France.

Zero CO2 road freight and passenger transport from North to South Europe, thanks to hydrogen: this is the objective of the European Corridor H2 project. The first Region to implement this project on a territorial scale is Occitanie, by including this initiative as an extension of its Green Hydrogen Plan and in its ambition to become the first positive energy region in Europe by 2050.

H2 corridor, a first in Europe

Corridor H2 is based on two pillars: on the one hand, the deployment of a network of hydrogen distribution stations along the major European North/South routes linking the North Sea to the Mediterranean and, on the other hand, the development of a fleet of heavy vehicles for the transport of goods and passengers (trucks, refrigeration units and coaches).

This project aims to involve all the territories crossed by the Trans-European Transport Network [1], in order to build the H2 Corridor in phases, brick by brick, starting with one territory, then another.

An investment of €110 million in the Occitan perimeter

The Occitan part is therefore the very first brick of corridor H2. On its perimeter, the Region plans by the end of 2023 to commission two green hydrogen production units,eight hydrogen distribution stations, 40 H2-powered trucks, 62 trailers/refrigeration units and 15 retrofit intercity H2 coaches (converted engine). A total investment of €110 million.

Corridor H2 Occitanie selected and financed by Europe

On 15 April 2021, the European Union informed the Region that it was selecting its project under its Connecting Europe Facility (CEM) call for projects in the transport component. As such, it has granted it a grant of €14.5 million, in addition to the €40 million loan granted to it by the European Investment Bank (EIB).

European Investment Bank said:

In total, the Corridor H2 project will avoid the annual consumption of 2.6 million litres of diesel per year,

Indeed, nearly nine million heavy goods vehicles use the roads of the Occitanie region every year.

The actors of the Hydrogen chain mobilized

On 19 April, the Region therefore launched a call for projects to identify the players who will deploy green hydrogen production and distribution infrastructures on the Occitan part of Corridor H2, initially focusing on three areas: Littoral A9, Toulouse and Tarn (for the Toulouse / Albi segment, A68).

In parallel, the Region has launched a Call for Expression of Interest (AMI),complementary to the call for projects, to support the actors of the territory (carriers, shippers …) in their transition to the use of hydrogen for zero-emission heavy mobility where it makes sense.

Thus, the future of green hydrogen is taking shape in Occitania, a region where projects are multiplying,such as HyPort, the hydrogen technocampus in Francazal and hydrogen trains.

Source: La Region Occitanie


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