Neste Corporation, Gasgrid Finland Ltd, Helen Ltd, and Vantaa Energy Ltd have joined forces to initiate preliminary studies for the development of an industrial hydrogen valley in the Uusimaa region of Finland.
This collaborative effort marks a significant stride towards establishing Finland as a key player in Europe’s hydrogen economy, creating investment opportunities and aligning with the country’s and Europe’s carbon neutrality objectives.
The industrial hydrogen valley will encompass infrastructure, storage, and transmission of renewable hydrogen, catering to both hydrogen producers and consumers. The studies also emphasize the potential for sector integration, particularly in utilizing the substantial renewable heat generated during hydrogen production for district heating purposes.
The hydrogen economy’s progress in Finland heavily relies on collaboration between companies, as emphasized in the national hydrogen resolution adopted by the Finnish Government in February 2023.
Neste, currently the largest hydrogen consumer in Finland, recognizes the necessity of renewable hydrogen to fulfill its climate commitments, including achieving carbon-neutral production by 2035. The establishment of a well-functioning hydrogen valley would provide an ideal source of hydrogen for Neste’s operations. To facilitate the development of the hydrogen economy, it is crucial to build power infrastructure and establish hydrogen storage and distribution networks. By fostering collaboration and seeking partnerships, Neste aims to explore new pathways and unlock a realm of exciting possibilities, according to Outi Ervasti, Vice President of Renewable Hydrogen at Neste.
To ensure the competitiveness of Finland’s hydrogen economy on a global scale, cost-effective solutions for hydrogen transmission and storage are vital. The feasibility of various transmission and storage options will be evaluated as the initial steps towards cultivating a robust hydrogen market. The development of hydrogen transmission infrastructure contributes to the emergence of a competitive hydrogen market, as Sara Kärki, Senior Vice President of Hydrogen Development at Gasgrid Finland, explains.
Helen, an ambitious player in the hydrogen economy, is planning large-scale hydrogen production at its Vuosaari power plant area in Helsinki. The company also awaits a funding decision from the Ministry of Economic Affairs and Employment for the 3H2 demonstration project. Furthermore, Helen is exploring the potential of carbon capture, utilization, and storage in the new Vuosaari bioenergy heating plant. Hydrogen, bio-based carbon dioxide, and extensive wind and solar power production form the foundation for Helen’s diverse carbon-neutral solutions, states Sari Mannonen, Senior Vice President of Solution Business and Portfolio Development at Helen.
Vantaa Energy, aiming to become a carbon-negative energy company by 2030, recognizes the significance of renewable hydrogen in enabling new processes such as carbon capture and utilization. These processes are crucial for utilizing unavoidable emissions from the company’s Waste to Energy operations. Additionally, hydrogen production in proximity to the district heating network facilitates waste heat utilization and contributes to the decarbonization of the Helsinki metropolitan area by reducing emissions from district heating, according to Kalle Patomeri, Business Director of Vantaa Energy.