In a move to reshape the landscape of Europe’s energy system, a groundbreaking alliance named H2eart for Europe emerged in Brussels in January 2024.
Comprising key players in the energy sector, the alliance aims to catalyze the decarbonization of Europe by spearheading the widespread adoption of underground hydrogen storage—a pivotal step towards achieving ambitious climate targets.
H2eart for Europe unites industry leaders, including Gasunie, HGS, Nafta, OMV, Rag Energy Storage, RWE Gas Storage West, SNAM, Storengy, Terega, Uniper, and VNG Gasspeicher. Their collective mission is clear: accelerate the deployment of underground hydrogen storage infrastructure, addressing the identified flexibility needs crucial for attaining RePowerEU’s objectives and broader climate goals by 2030 and beyond.
The alliance’s inception responds to a pressing challenge—the existence of a substantial gap of 36 TWh (terawatt-hours) between identified flexibility needs and projects slated for 2030. Bridging this gap necessitates an urgent investment ranging from 18 to 36 billion euros. H2eart for Europe perceives an immediate need to expedite the implementation of hydrogen storage projects to meet the escalating demand anticipated between 2030 and 2050.
Endorsing this groundbreaking initiative is Maroš Šefčovič, Executive Vice-President of the European Commission. Šefčovič underscores the strategic importance of alliances like H2eart for Europe, emphasizing their ability to leverage European political influence and harness the innovation prowess of business leaders.
Shifting focus to renewable energy requires robust storage solutions to ensure a consistent energy supply. H2eart for Europe identifies hydrogen as a pivotal flexibility vector, especially in addressing the seasonal consumption differences that challenge long-term energy storage. The alliance asserts that hydrogen, with its unique properties, stands out as a critical element in the pursuit of energy flexibility.
The member entities of H2eart for Europe position themselves as prime drivers for substantial infrastructure development. Their commitment extends beyond immediate goals, aiming to bring about a lasting transformation in the energy landscape. As pioneers in the industry, these entities are poised to spearhead the monumental task of advancing underground hydrogen storage.