Germany: Northern Regions Launch Hydrogen Strategy

By November 8, 2019 5   min read  (851 words)

November 8, 2019 |

Northern German Hydrogen Strategy

By 2025, 150,000 cars could already be powered by green hydrogen

LÜBECK–Collaboration of the five North German coastal states to build a green hydrogen economy as a pillar of energy and transport change: At their autumn meeting in Lübeck, the ministers responsible for commerce and transport passed today (7 November) a common “North German hydrogen strategy. “

At the same time, the department heads called on the federal government to support their efforts and to incorporate them into the national hydrogen strategy announced by the federal government for the end of the year. “With our strategy, we are showing a way of raising the hydrogen potential, especially in the area of ​​industry and mobility. Especially our windy coastal countries are well suited for this industrial project, climate protection goals can be realized at the same time “, said conference host dr. Bernd Buchholz (FDP), Minister of Economic Affairs in Schleswig-Holstein. The first important step is the construction of sufficient capacities for electrolysis. With this technical process, electricity can be transformed into hydrogen. The strategy is to realize at least 500 megawatts by the year 2025 and at least five gigawatts of electrolysis capacity in northern Germany by 2030.

According to Buchholz, theoretically alone with the 500 megawatts of green electricity from offshore wind farms, around 151,000 cars could be supplied with green hydrogen. With an increase to five gigawatts would be 1.5 million cars, which corresponds to the current registration of all cars in Schleswig-Holstein. In addition, parallel to the current construction of electric charging stations, the construction of a hydrogen filling station network is necessary. For this purpose, the department heads consider an order of magnitude of around 250 filling stations in northern Germany to be necessary.

Hamburg’s non-party economics and transport senator Michael Westhagemann also made it clear: “For me, hydrogen is a matter of the heart, and I think the time is ripe for us to set out together – not just with general resolutions, but with practical hands in hand. The North German hydrogen strategy should express our political commitment and set the guidelines for this. The actors from the economy are waiting for this because they are ready to make their contribution. Together, we want to start the process of building a hydrogen economy. The federal government must contribute the necessary tailwind. Therefore, with this strategy paper, we will approach the Federal Government in a timely manner, clarify our resolve here in Northern Germany, and call upon the Confederation to

Lower Saxony’s Minister of Economic Affairs and Transport Bernd Althusmann (CDU) referred to the good conditions in Northern Germany to become the leading region in a green hydrogen economy: “Regenerative hydrogen will become the global strategic energy source of the future. That’s why we want to build a strong hydrogen economy together. Our goal of fully supplying all interested customers with enough green hydrogen by 2035 is demanding. It is important that the federal government now creates the right conditions. Only in this way can companies remain internationally competitive despite ambitious climate protection goals and rising energy costs. ”

Specifically, ministers and senators referred to the following locational advantages of the North in building a hydrogen economy:

  • high generation capacities for onshore and offshore wind power with further expansion potential,
  • underground formations for the storage of hydrogen,
  • Seaports, which will play an essential role in the import and distribution of green hydrogen and synthetic energy sources as well as in the use of hydrogen and the export of hydrogen technologies and components,
  • maritime companies and scientific expertise as well
  • Industries with significant experience in handling hydrogen
  • additional know-how is being built up in the six North German “Real-time Laboratories of the Energiewende”.

Bremen’s first Senator for Economic Affairs, Kristina Vogt, said: “The state of Bremen, together with the other coastal states, will also be working intensively on the technology for utilizing the surplus wind power and thus advancing an important field of competence in the energy transition. The use of hydrogen as an energy storage medium is an important pillar of sector interconnection and opens up promising future markets for the Bremen and Bremerhaven locations. ”

The Senator Dr. Bremer Haven and Science responsible for Bremen’s ports and science. Claudia Schilling adds: “Research and development and driving innovation are essential for the success of a hydrogen-based economy. We want to make northern Germany a hotspot for hydrogen research. ”

Mecklenburg-Vorpommern State Secretary for Economic Affairs Stefan Rudolph (CDU) made it clear that the energy turnaround could only succeed with a comprehensive sector coupling: “The establishment of a green hydrogen economy is an economic and structural political opportunity for the coastal federal states. Because: Green hydrogen is a key energy source of the energy transition. It is crucial that the onshore and offshore electricity produced from sustainable sources of energy can be stored and used for other areas – such as industry and transport. There is potential here for more added value and also for sustainable jobs. That is why we must work together to drive forward and implement the hydrogen strategy quickly. ”



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