New partner strengthens pipeline’s pan-European dimension, says President Macron
Germany is joining the project known as H2MED, agreed between Portugal, Spain and France last October (initially to carry both gas at the outset and then green hydrogen, but now solely focusing on the latter).
The announcement came today at the end of the Franco-German summit held in Paris.
A delighted French president Macron said: “We have decided to extend the H2MED, which thanks to European funds unites Portugal, Spain and France, to Germany, which will be a partner in the infrastructure of this project”.
Mr Macron added there is “a will” to promote green hydrogen at a European level.
The Spanish government, in a statement today, also announced the agreement stressing that this “strengthening of the pan-European dimension of H2MED (…) for the first time in history” could turn the Iberian Peninsula into a ‘hub’ leader of green energy for the whole of Europe”.
“The agreement comes after negotiations between the governments of the four countries, favoured by their deeply pro-European vision,” said Spanish sources
Back in October, Portugal and Spain reached an agreement with France to build new links to transport green hydrogen, one between Celorico da Beira and Zamora (CelZa) and another between Barcelona and Marseille (BarMar), in a project dubbed H2MED.
Months before, German Prime Minister Olaf Scholz had advocated the construction of a pan-European ‘pipeline’ from Portugal to Germany to reduce the continent’s dependence on Russian gas, and to diversify energy sources.
The new links to transport energy between Portugal, Spain and France, known as the ‘Green Energy Corridor’, for various reasons however (not least logistic) has ended up dropping the idea altogether of carrying gas.
The project is expected to cost €3 billion, of which 50% of funding should be covered by European funding – and it should be completed by 2030.
Say reports, H2MED “will have the capacity to transport two million tonnes of green hydrogen per year between Barcelona and Marseille and 750,000 tonnes between Celorico da Beira and Zamora.
“These quantities correspond to 10% of the estimated consumption of green hydrogen (H2) throughout the European Union in 2030, which would make this project the first major European corridor of this energy”, explains Lusa.
Green hydrogen is produced from renewable energies, such as solar or wind power (which Portugal and Spain have in abundance)
H2MED “will require, on the part of Portugal (…), reconversions of the gas network to bring hydrogen from production areas to Celorico da Beira and, in turn, to Spain,” said Portuguese Environment Minister, Duarte Cordeiro last year.
Right now, the country does not have any production areas, albeit these are envisaged for Sines primarily.