Several key legislative and project-based announcements were released towards the end of week 11, ICIS has provided the below round-up, highlighting key components of the European hydrogen market developments.
NORWAY, EU STRENGTHEN HYDROGEN TIES
Norway and the European Union announced 17 March that the two bodies would increase cooperation on the green transition, the Norwegian government said in a press release.
Norway has been a key supplier of hydrocarbons to mainland Europe for decades, and this relationship has only strengthened amid Russia’s military invasion of Ukraine in February last year.
However, the two discussed the need to build up renewable power generation capacity, both for electricity usage and for renewable hydrogen production, and to enhance competitiveness in the global market place.
Norway said that the country could “provide key contributions in areas of battery technology, minerals, offshore wind, hydrogen, and carbon capture and storage.”
ITALY PUSHING AHEAD WITH HYDROGEN
During the week, the Italian government announced that a €2 billion support package was available for selected projects in industrial sectors which are hard to decarbonise to aid the replacement of fossil fuels with low carbon hydrogen.
The Ministry of the Environment and Energy Security said that “hydrogen is a strategic supply chain for the future.”
Indeed, the Ministry said earlier this month that renewable hydrogen was the “qualifying choice” for decarbonisation in the aviation sector.
Speaking at a conference in Milan, Gilberto Pichetto, minister for environment and energy security in Italy also said that there could be room for manoeuvre for extensions to projects in this area in the National Recovery and Resilience Plan which currently have a deadline of 31 August 2026 for funding.
BELGIAN HYDROGEN COUNCIL
On 17 March, two regional cluster organizations in Belgium, WaterstofNet and Cluster Tweed, launched the Belgian Hydrogen Council “to consolidate and strengthen Belgium’s position in Europe and on the global stage as a pioneering hub of excellence for clean hydrogen.”
The 150 members of the Waterstof Industrie Cluster coordinated by WaterstofNet and the 70 members of the H2Hub Wallonia coordinated by Cluster Tweed are automatically members of the Belgian Hydrogen Council.
The Board of the Belgian Hydrogen Council is formed by eight companies, covering the hydrogen value chain. These companies (ENGIE, John Cockerill, Fluxys, Port of Antwerp-Bruges, ArcelorMittal, INEOS, Virya Energy, and Sirris) were elected among all cluster members and will represent the Belgian Hydrogen Council for the next two years.