A lack of political will to take tough decisions will be the biggest barrier to the creation of hydrogen networks, an energy researcher has claimed. Malcolm Keay, senior research fellow at the Oxford Institute for Energy Studies, said the gas industry will need to take the lead if they are to become more than just a pipe dream. Speaking at the Low Carbon Networks and Innovation Conference hosted by the Energy Networks Association, Keay told delegates one of the reasons the power sector is being decarbonised first is that in political terms it is the “low-hanging fruit”. Large peaks in winter demand and current lack of viable seasonal energy storage make hydrogen networks appear attractive for the decarbonisation of heat. However, he questioned whether the government will be willing to the bear the associated political price. Whether through taxes on natural gas or subsidies for hydrogen, there would be a large financial cost that would need to be paid by either taxpayers or consumers. Even running the necessary large-scale demonstration projects would be very expensive: “It’s difficult to see that spread across all consumers. The likely outcome, from my point of view is that we’re going to continue muddling on through with heat: little bits of energy efficiency; little bits of support for district heating; little bits of support for other approaches.”
Utility Week 19th Oct 2018 read more »
The grid operators TenneT, Gasunie Deutschland and Thyssengas are getting down to business. They have put forward detailed plans for coupling the electricity and gas grids and advancing the energy transition. The three grid operators are planning to build a power-to-gas pilot plant in Lower Saxony; at an output of 100 megawatts, it will be the largest of its kind in Germany. The “ELEMENT ONE” pilot project will give the companies first experiences with power-to-gas facilities on an industrial scale. Starting in 2022, the pilot plant will be connected to the grid gradually. By converting green energy into gas, it will develop new storage capacities for renewable energies. The partners ultimately hope to achieve a comprehensive coupling of the energy, transport and industrial sectors. Gas that has been produced from green energy will be transported from the North Sea to the Ruhr region through existing pipelines, but that is not all. It could also be made available to the mobility sector through hydrogen filling stations and to industrial consumers through storage caverns.
Tennet 16th Oct 2018 read more »
In their joint position paper “Power to Gas – A Sector Coupling Perspective”, ENTSO-E and ENTSOG, the European associations of transmission system operators respectively for electricity and gas, call for scaling up the power conversion technologies to further explore its potential. Power to Gas – and other P2X (e.g. Power to Liquid, Power to Heat, …) – may have the potential to reduce the cost of the decarbonized energy system in particular when the end consumption is either gas or other high value energy forms.
Entsoe 15th Oct 2018 read more »
The Australian government said on Monday it would provide half the funding for the country’s biggest trial to produce hydrogen using solar and wind energy, which could then be used as a back-up for gas supplies. The A$15 million ($11 million) project is being run by gas pipeline company Jemena, which plans to build a 500 kilowatt electrolyser in western Sydney that will use solar and wind power to split water into hydrogen and oxygen. Most of the hydrogen will then be injected into the local gas network, aiming to show that renewable hydrogen could be used for energy storage in Australia’s gas networks, the Australian Renewable Energy Agency said.
Reuters 22nd Oct 2018 read more »