- The projects included in this initiative entail an investment of 1,300 million euros until 2026, generating more than 1,340 direct jobs and 6,700 indirect jobs, which will translate into the production of 20,000 tons of renewable hydrogen per year and a reduction of 1.5 million tons of CO2 in this period.
The Gasnam sustainable mobility association today held an online conference to present the Basque Hydrogen Corridor, a pioneering initiative, born from the hand of Petronor and Repsol, to advance in the decarbonisation of transport, among other sectors.
The guests at this presentation were welcomed by the general secretary of Gasnam, Eugenia Sillero; the president of the Basque Hydrogen Corridor Association, José Ignacio Zudaire, and its vice-president, Íñigo Ansola.
During her speech, Eugenia Sillero stated that “green hydrogen is synonymous with energy security, sustainability and economic development” and underlined the importance of this energy vector for decarbonizing heavy transport that is difficult to electrify.
For his part, José Ignacio Zudaire elaborated on the words of the General Secretary of Gasnam and insisted that the Basque Hydrogen Corridor will also be a great asset for the area: “We must turn the great challenge of the energy transition into an opportunity to the economic reactivation of the territory and contribute to technological and industrial development”.
Íñigo Ansola, general director of the Basque Energy Agency, considered that we are facing “a key and strategic project, where public-private collaboration is going to be the backbone. It will serve to create a value chain, a new ecosystem that will generate jobs and that will be essential in the goal of decarbonization.”
What is the Basque Hydrogen Corridor
As head of hydrogen projects at Petronor Innovation, Arturo Fernández was in charge of explaining what it consists of and what the major objectives and challenges of the Basque Hydrogen Corridor are. “The Basque Hydrogen Corridor project consists of the creation of a hydrogen ecosystem in the Basque Country to develop projects and advance in the decarbonisation of the economy, improving the competitiveness of Basque industry”, Fernández summed up, after adding that the Corridor It was officially established in October 2021 and currently 78 companies are involved in it, hoping to form alliances with other industrial ecosystems, share similar European experiences, enable transport corridors and value hydrogen as a renewable resource.
Subsequently, several of the Basque Energy Corridor projects that have a closer relationship with Gasnam’s activity were presented.
Juan Manuel Fernández, energy efficiency technician at the Basque Energy Agency, presented the green hydrogen production project that will be located at the Petronor refinery in Muskiz (Bizkaia) thanks to an electrolyser with a 2.5 MW capacity. Fernández announced that, less than a kilometer from the refinery, the Abanto technology park is being built, closely linked to H2 and its technologies, where there will be a logistics center for conditioning and storage, as well as a hydro generator that will dispense at 350 bar and 700 bar. This center will also supply, in a second phase carried out in collaboration with Petronor, three other hydroelectric plants that will be next to the Basque capitals.
First hydroduct in Spain
The transport of hydrogen from the refinery to the hydroelectric plant will be carried out through a hydroduct built by Nortegas that will have an approximate length of 900 meters. Precisely this hydroduct was also referred to by Izaskun Gorostiaga, Chief Commercial Officer of Nortegas, who announced that the “hydrogen start-up” is scheduled for the end of 2022. Gorostiaga also presented the conclusions of the H2area study on the behavior of hydrogen in distribution networks that your company is doing.
Hidrovan in the port of Bilbao
Ibai Uria, head of the Department of Health, Safety and Environment of the Port Authority of Bilbao, spoke about the Hidrovan Project for the energy transition in the Port of Bilbao. “Hydrovan is a project that consists of the adaptation or construction of a mobile device that can supply electricity to ships in a versatile way, an electricity that would be generated by hydrogen on board said device,” said Uria.
Hydrogen train prototype
Alfredo González, responsible for Corporate Venturing of the company Talgo, advanced the keys of the H2 traction project in railways, as well as the development that arises, with its challenges and opportunities for collaboration, within the Corridor. “The railway starts from a privileged position in decarbonization because it represents only 0.24% of all transport emissions, but we are not satisfied. Hydrogen trains are the best alternative to diesel technology on catenary-free tracks to reduce emissions. And at this moment we are working on a prototype that can circulate on electrified and non-electrified tracks indistinctly. The train will be tested next summer and then we will move on to a second phase to calibrate the competitiveness requirements”.
Long distance H2 coaches
For his part, Iñaki García Sanz, head of the Integral Vehicle Area of the Irízar company, explained the current status of the project they are carrying out to develop a long-distance hydrogen coach solution. A zero-emission solution for road passenger transport, with features similar to those of diesel vehicles.
“The goal is to provide a zero-emission solution for long-distance passenger road transport with attributes and performance similar to diesel vehicles. We have set ourselves a range of 500 kilometers and a refueling time of about 10 minutes with two different prototypes. But some challenges still have to be faced and the technology validated with a view to future serial production”, Iñaki García Sanz clarified.
The recording of the presentation is available on Gasnam’s YouTube channel: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-LB7j6lMfKY
Gasnam is the sustainable transport association that integrates the value chain of renewable gas and hydrogen to meet the environmental, economic and operational challenges of transport by land, sea and air, in Spain and Portugal. It currently has 142 partners from multiple sectors such as energy, automotive, engineering, freight and passenger transport, ports, shipping companies, shipyards, universities and administrations, among others.