Green hydrogen

Unlocking hydrogen opportunities together

One of the biggest global challenges we face today is how to adapt to- and mitigate climate change. With its unique proportions, no country can face it alone. Signed in 2015, the Paris Agreement forms the largest agreement for countries to fight against climate change. To successfully limit the effects of the climate crisis, the global community needs to collaborate. Not only by agreeing on national and international reduction targets, but also by collaborating in sharing knowledge, experience and resources to accelerate the development and implementation of clean technologies to reach our targets.

The global energy transition plays a huge role in successfully limiting climate change. It is a cross-sectoral and cross-border system issue in which both national and international efforts should be closely connected. Recent geopolitical developments have only emphasized the urgency of transitioning to renewable energies through international collaboration. Believing in the EU strategy, the Netherlands is committed to creating partnerships across borders that will contribute to systematic changes that directly influence the energy transition.

There is a growing international consensus that clean hydrogen will play an important role in a climate neutral economy. This is largely due to the creation of new opportunities in balancing the supply and demand of energy, seasonal storage and global exports and imports of renewable energy. It can also be used as an alternative to natural gas in industrial processes, as a feedstock for the production of chemicals, and as a carbon-neutral fuel in virtually all modes of transport, especially those for which electrification is not (yet) an option. Hydrogen facilitates the renewable energy sector as it paves the way for further large-scale investments in wind and solar power by creating flexibility to deal with the variable supply of electricity. Enabling efficient transportation of electricity and creating long-term and large scale storage can also be a result of further hydrogen developments.

International collaboration is at the heart of our energy transition. The same goes for its widespread application. We are ready to share knowledge, experience and technologies that will bring hydrogen to the mix of solutions contributing to the energy transition. 

The ideal hub The Netherlands possesses many good, solid assets which can help in the development of hydrogen as a clean energy carrier. The country can serve as a hydrogen hub to North-Western Europe. This is due to our strategic location by the North Sea, with our many wind farms, heavy industry and well established naval connections. Work is also already underway by HyStock for the first large-scale underground storage of hydrogen, which should be operational by 2026. We can act at every step of the way in the import, production, storage and distribution of hydrogen. This is largely possible thanks to the Port of Rotterdam, known as the largest port in Europe, which serves as a gateway to the rest of the European mainland. Hydrogen corridors can be set up by rail and rivers, allowing for inland shipping between the Rijnmond and the Alps, as well as the hinterland. Rotterdam is also home to the major civil engineering project Maasvlakte 2. Here a conversion park is being developed to house electrolyser developments from a wide range of energy players. Solutions applied to the Port of Rotterdam can be scaled and applied to other ports around the country, which can also be replicated abroad. Pipeline corridors with the east and south are also being developed, which will increase our reach and accessibility to share hydrogen solutions and expertise. And tank storage solutions that are currently used for LNG and other fossil fuels can be adapted for clean hydrogen storage.

Another strong asset of the Netherlands is the large natural gas infrastructure network, which is also one of the most sophisticated in the world. The publication of HyWay27 has confirmed that the existing natural gas network can be used for the transport of hydrogen between regions and abroad. By converting this (already existing) infrastructure, we are taking the transition and development of hydrogen to the next level. Together with our neighbouring countries we are preparing a transnational hydrogen infrastructure known as the hydrogen backbone. Dutch hydrogen expertise With a long history of working with natural gas and being the second largest user of hydrogen in Europe, we can translate years of knowledge and experience into developing the entire hydrogen value chain. The same applies for our extensive experience in chemical and energy-intensive industries, providing us with the expertise to accurately apply hydrogen to large industry. And finally, with strong research and development in the field of electrochemistry, Dutch research institutions can play an important role in the needed improvement of electrolysers and innovations in consecutive markets. With five large industry clusters (including chemical, oil refinery, ammonia and steel) playing a large part in the economy, scaling hydrogen solutions and further development so it can meet these industries high demand can significantly help reduce CO2 emissions.

The Netherlands takes a ‘quadruple helix’ approach to solving global challenges, whereby collaborative environments with government bodies, knowledge institutes, companies and society come together. We are all part of the (global) energy transition, and we all have an impact. This collaborative nature of the Dutch takes place not only nationally but also through our strong connections with Europe and beyond. Together, we can co-create solutions, develop sustainable business models and empower countries worldwide to drive the global energy transition. A number of collaborative research and development projects are already underway, as well as investment and funding initiatives. For example, HyDelta, a consortium formed by top hydrogen players, focuses on an integrated approach to solutions for the transport and different uses of hydrogen. GroenvermogenNL, a research, demonstration and investment program, recently received more than 800 million euro towards the scaling up, innovating, converting, rebuilding and training for hydrogen and chemistry developments.

The northern region of the Netherlands finds itself with a unique opportunity: to cost-effectively develop an integrated hydrogen ecosystem, which can prove to be a game-changer in global hydrogen developments and accelerate the energy transition. This integrated approach allows for the best technologies from the country to come together and work in one specific region. The entire hydrogen value chain can be created here. From sustainable energy sources and production to storage, transport and applications. The Hydrogen Valley has over 30 subprojects running and in preparation with public-private parties taking a cross-sectorial approach under 4 different themes; storage and infrastructure, generating hydrogen as a raw material for industrial use, 3 using hydrogen as heat and power in residential areas, and sustainable mobility. With Europe’s first hydrogen valley, the Netherlands can accelerate the energy transition and development of hydrogen, as well as serve as an example for the international community to follow.

Hydrogen is highly versatile and can be used in a wide range of industries and applications. It can be use both as a fuel and as a feedstock for several industrial processes. This means we can move away from polluting industries and transition to more sustainable practices, which is especially useful in heavy-duty industries. Transport can also benefit from hydrogen as it reduces emissions of inland shipping and aviation. The Netherlands knows sustainable development can only be achieved through joint efforts and working together. We carry innovation in our core, which along with first-class technical expertise means only the highest standards will be accepted. With our participation in Horizon 2020 and succeeding programmes, we aim at solving global challenges through excellent science and research, now and in the future. We strongly believe in the EU’s commitment to moving away from fossil fuels and towards more sustainable energy sources. We thrive in a high-tech environment, where our global players create flexible, fast-moving networks of specialist companies and research institutes. With organised national consortia for clean energy expertise, the Netherlands is keen to internationally exchange knowledge and skills in many areas such to set up international supply chains. From production, import, and manufacturing electrolysers, to transport, storage, and applications in heavy industries, hydrogen offers a wide range of possibilities. The Netherlands has a particular focus on renewable energy innovation and offers fast and easy access to the right technology providers, researchers and other specialists. Covering markets across the world, we are happy to hear your stories and work together to create cleaner energy for everyone.

Chile, like all the Parties subscribed to the Paris Climate Agreement, must implement the necessary actions to fulfill the commitments agreed in its Nationally Determined Contribution (NDC), and move towards inclusive and sustainable development. Green hydrogen is a key element for Chile to reach its climate goals. Based on its enormous potential in renewable energy in wind, solar and hydropower, Chile has the ambition to become by 2030 one of the largest and cheapest hydrogen producers of the world. It is estimated that the low production cost is able to compensate the relatively high transportation costs due to its remote location, making the green hydrogen produced in Chile competitive on a global scale.

Chile is pursuing four lines of action in order to promote this new industry: Construction of a national green hydrogen strategy, development of safety standards, support for early projects, and international cooperation. Various public and private initiatives and pilots are already underway in Chile, such as the private project Haru Oni in the far south of Chile using wind power to produce hydrogen, which is turned into synthetic methanol to be converted into E-Fuel, and two green ammonia projects in the North of Chile to produce green ammonia at a large scale for domestic consumption, maritime transportation use, and possibly export.

Chile is making funds available to push the development of a green hydrogen industry, for example the USD 50 mln subsidy round through the Chilean economic development agency Corfo with the purpose of funding green hydrogen projects in Chile. Chile also has an active hydrogen association which is a colaborative platform between public, private and academic parties interested in using hydrogen as an energy vector. InvestChile, the government agency responsible for promoting Chile in the global market as a destination for foreign direct investment, has published a guide on development and opportunities in hydrogen in Chile.

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Interesting links and resources...

References:

DGA: Dirección General de Agua, Ministerio de Obras Públicas (www.dga.cl)

GORE: Gobierno Regional

CDRP: Corporación Regional de Desarrollo Productivo (www.crdp.cl)

DOP: Dirección de Obras Portuarias, Ministerio de Obras Públicas (www.dop.cl)

DOH: Dirección de Obras Hidráulicas, Ministerio de Obras Públicas (www.doh.gov.cl)

APR: Agua Potable Rural (www.doh.gov.cl/apr/acercadeapr/paginas/acercaapr.aspx)

GIRAgua

With its extremely elongated shape, 4,000 kilometres from north to south, and geographic diversity, Chile has a multitude of water issues. The availability of water is one of the most urgent issues. The north of Chile in particular is extremely dry. In 2019, the Netherlands and Chile started the GIRAgua recharge pilot project aimed at water retention and underground storage in the Coquimbo region.

The GIRAgua recharge pilot project is looking at the catchment area of the Elqui River which flows from the Andes to the Pacific Ocean. This catchment has hardly any water in the dry season, but does have water in the rainy season which then disappears straight into the sea. The project consists of aquifer recharge and underground storage practices to contribute to integrated water management of the Coquimbo region. The project is an initiative of a Dutch consortium led by Deltares and co-implemented with Chilean partners.  Financially, GIRAgua is supported by the subsidy scheme of the Dutch Partners for Water programme and the Government of the Coquimbo region. 

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NL-Chile cooperation

The Port of Rotterdam has signed an Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) on green hydrogen with the Chilean Ministry of Energy regarding cooperation on the strategic issue of setting up one or several export-import corridors for green hydrogen between Chile and the Port of Rotterdam and the exchange of knowledge. This is the first agreement on hydrogen as a fuel and feedstock signed by the Ministry of Energy with a European port. The agreement is considered to be of national importance in both the Netherlands and Chile. The objective is to set Port of Rotterdam as a key distribution hub for the commercialization of green hydrogen exported from Chile to Europe in general, and The Netherlands in particular.

Joint statement

The Minister of Energy of Chile, Mr Juan Carlos Jobet Eluchans, and the State Secretary for Economic Affairs and Climate Policy of the Netherlands, Ms Dilan Yeşilgöz-Zegerius, met in The Hague on the 1st of July 2021 to exchange views on the role of hydrogen in the energy transition and on future collaboration. In the joint statement they agree on establishing a structured dialogue with regard to cooperation on setting up export-import corridors for green hydrogen between Chile and The Netherlands. The Minister and State Secretary expressed their willingness and intention to:

  1. Strengthen the ties of friendship and enhance bilateral cooperation and knowledge sharing in fields such as standards, trade rules, policies, technologies, certification and investments to support the development of green hydrogen;
  2. Jointly promote public and private investment in green hydrogen projects, thereby creating new opportunities for companies and industry and supporting private-sector networks in accelerating the implementation of both countries’ hydrogen strategies;
  3. Strengthen collaboration in multilateral hydrogen forums, including the Hydrogen Initiative of the Clean Energy Ministerial (CEM) and the International Partnership for Hydrogen and Fuel Cells in the Economy (IPHE), in which both Chile and the Netherlands participate.
Events
  • Chile and the Netherlands want to strengthen and expand the existing cooperation in the field of smart logistics and sustainable port development. As part of this, the Netherlands Enterprise Agency (RVO), the Embassy of the Kingdom of the Netherlands in Chile, ProChile Netherlands and InvestChile are organizing a trade mission to Chile from 6 to 11 November 2022. This mission is for innovative companies with technologies, products, or services in the field of green hydrogen. You can find more information on the mission here.
  • Following up on the World Hydrogen 2022 Summit & Exhibition which took place from 9 to 11 May 2022, the next edition will take place in Rotterdam in May 2023. Keep an eye on their website for more information.
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EU-Chile cooperation

In addition to bilateral cooperation, EU-Chile collaboration is taking place in the field of green hydrogen. The Team Europe Initiative (TEI) on Green Hydrogen (GH2) development in Chile is a joint effort of the EU and its Member States to foster cooperation with Chile for the development of its green hydrogen economy. The aim is to boost investment opportunities in the field of green hydrogen in Chile by supporting the creation of an attractive enabling environment, providing concessional financing, promoting collaboration in R&D and fostering business cooperation. The GH2 TEI will support the decarbonization of the Chilean economy, creating green jobs and generating business opportunities for Chilean and European companies, whilst meeting Europe’s own demand for import of green hydrogen.

Chile is recognized as one of the leading global candidates and LAC front-runner for cheap GH2 production due to its enormous renewable energy resources and ambitious GH2 strategy.

The GH2 TEI initiative will support the decarbonization of the Chilean economy, creating green jobs and generating business opportunities for Chilean and European companies, whilst meeting Europe’s own demand for import of green hydrogen.

The Team Europe Initiative (TEI) to promote the development of green hydrogen in Chile seeks to foster cooperation with Chile in the following areas:

  1. A)           Strengthening the enabling environment for the green hydrogen economy
  2. B)            Supporting Technological Development and Human Capital
  3. C)            Market Development/Business Cooperation
  4. D)           Project Development/Finance