Euro Chlor Hydrogen Day aims to kick-start the hydrogen economy
Hydrogen is currently seen as a vital building block towards a climate neutral economy. As a key producer of around 270,000 tonnes of high purity hydrogen per year in Europe, European chlor-alkali can help to kick-start the hydrogen economy with the full utilisation of our important by-product and optimal use with more added value applications. This hydrogen can even be renewable when produced by renewable electricity and meeting the criteria for Renewable Fuels of Non-Biological Origin (RFNBO).
With this in mind, Euro Chlor held its first ‘Hydrogen Day’ in Brussels on 7 March 2023. This face-to-face event brought together more than 80 Euro Chlor members, partners, hydrogen technology vendors and policy makers to address the challenges in achieving full and optimal utilisation, as well as identifying opportunities to work together.
A video of Cefic Director-General, Marco Mensink, kicked off the event outlining the importance of hydrogen to the chemical industry, followed by Tim Hard of Argus who gave a general overview of the developments in the hydrogen market. The high-level panel session on ’Opportunities and challenges for hydrogen towards climate neutrality’ covered the overall policy framework and market expectations for hydrogen in general, which is also relevant to chlor-alkali. Moderated by Nicola Rega, Cefic Energy Director, the discussion featured Ruud Kempener of the European Commission DG ENER, Dieter Schnepel of Euro Chlor member Dow Chemical Company, Tobias Bühnen of Gas Infrastructure Europe, Stefano Miriello of RE-Source Platform and Kenneth Bruninx of TU Delft. Ruud Kempener recognised the role of chlor-alkali production of hydrogen and encouraged our industry to lead the way and take our experience to other industries.
Following this panel, two Euro Chlor members, Nobian and Bondalti, presented their case studies on how they are reducing their carbon footprint and five technology vendors set out their new technologies for hydrogen. Poster sessions were also held to explain various challenges and technical solutions for hydrogen. Euro Chlor showcased its new Hydrogen Tree that summarises the various and diverse applications of hydrogen.
To close the day, two parallel sessions were held on elements crucial to kick-starting the European hydrogen economy. The first session covered Power Purchasing Agreements (PPAs) and the further development of a commodity hydrogen market, and the second the certification of hydrogen. The presentations in these final sessions were particularly relevant to chlor-alkali as Euro Chlor is seeking recognition and a clear role for its pure hydrogen by-product with a low carbon footprint. In order to contribute to the RFNBO target, the availability of renewable PPAs has to increase and ways need to be found to match the PPA output profile with our base load profile. In order to deliver our hydrogen to customers with hydrogen applications, an expansion of dedicated hydrogen infrastructure with third party access rights is also needed.
For more information, contact Kristof May, Euro Chlor Regulatory Affairs Manager, at [email protected].