Hydrogen instead of methane: Gazprom will be able to export a new type of fuel to Europe

Hydrogen instead of methane: Gazprom will be able to export a new type of fuel to Europe
Hydrogen instead of methane: Gazprom will be able to export a new type of fuel to Europe
7 October 2020, 19:52
European countries are preparing to switch to hydrogen fuel, in connection with which Russia is preparing to supply it via the Nord Stream gas pipelines.

After 2030, hydrogen should become the main energy source for the economy of Germany and developed countries of Europe. In the September issue of the corporate magazine "Gazprom", a long article tells how the Russian gas corporation is ready to switch to the production of hydrogen for Germany and Europe in general. Experts from the Proeconomics channel thought about the fact that in Russia they can come to replace the export proceeds for oil, whose era is obviously passing away. And we came to the conclusion that it could be hydrogen, and its transportation to Germany is possible through the Nord Stream and Nord Stream-2 and other existing pipelines. The channel provides the main conclusions from the Gazprom article:

"Europe has taken a course towards decarbonizing energy and plans to switch to a hydrogen economy by 2050. In June 2020, the German government approved the Nationale Wasserstoffstrategie (National Hydrogen Strategy). The document states that the country is starting to reorient its economy to a fundamentally new energy, which will be based on hydrogen.

The demand of the German market for hydrogen will be 90-110 TWh by 2030.

The main problem with producing "green" hydrogen is that it is still too expensive. Today electrolysis with electricity from renewable energy sources remains the most expensive hydrogen production technology in the world. It is three times more expensive than steam methane reforming. That is why "green" hydrogen accounts for only 4% of world production (78% of hydrogen is obtained from the processing of natural gas and oil, 18% - from coal). The German government itself admits that under the current conditions the production and use of not only "green", but also any other hydrogen in many sectors of the economy is unprofitable.

Therefore, both in the medium and long term, it will have to import hydrogen, and in very significant volumes. Obviously, most of the hydrogen consumed in Germany will be purchased outside Germany. This means that already now it is necessary to create an infrastructure for the supply of hydrogen from abroad. Germany, together with other potential importers, needs to quickly begin to form a global hydrogen market.

The German Association of Gas Transportation Operators FNB has already presented the concept of a nationwide hydrogen infrastructure, within the framework of which more than 90% of 5,900 km of existing gas networks are proposed to be redesigned for hydrogen transportation by 2030.

In early June, the Energy Strategy of the Russian Federation until 2035 was approved. It sets the task of Russia's joining the ranks of the world leaders in the production and export of hydrogen.

The first domestic producers of hydrogen - Gazprom and Rosatom - have been identified. These companies, according to the plan, will launch pilot hydrogen plants by 2024.

A promising method for producing hydrogen without releasing CO2 is methane pyrolysis without oxygen, in which only hydrogen and solid carbon are formed in the form of soot, which can be used in various industries as raw materials.

Even the most conservative estimates show that the existing infrastructure of Gazprom already now allows transporting a gas mixture, in which the hydrogen level can reach 20%. And the most modern gas pipelines (for example, such as Nord Stream and Nord Stream 2) are capable of exporting fuel, in which the share of hydrogen is up to 70% ..."

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