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NEWS & INSIGHTS | article

Hydrogen Backbone Link: Enabling wind-green hydrogen projects

08 September 2021 3 minute read

Enabling wind-green hydrogen projects for the UK and export to Europe.

The production and use of Hydrogen will play a key role in the UK reaching its climate objectives and net zero. Affordable hydrogen transport is fundamental, with a huge opportunity for the oil and gas sector to support in the development of the hydrogen economy, by repurposing existing infrastructure.

The Hydrogen Backbone Link project will position Scotland in a leading role for the development of pan-European hydrogen infrastructure, creating export capability by repurposing and optimising existing pipeline infrastructure both on and offshore as well as developing complimentary options such as marine transport by ship.

The project will consider how a hydrogen pipeline network could be established between the proposed energy hubs and existing national grid infrastructure linking ports and other infrastructure.

It will address the opportunity for Scotland and the rest of the UK to supply hydrogen to Europe as part of an extensive hydrogen transport and distribution system. To realise the international opportunity, the project will explore synergies with the Gas for Climate (G4C) plans for a European Hydrogen Backbone. The strategic link to Europe differentiates this hydrogen project from others in the UK, such as Acorn, Dolyphn, Gigastack, HyPER and HyNet, which focus on the generation rather than distribution and export of hydrogen.

Reusing existing pipeline assets to export hydrogen will accelerate the delivery of a hydrogen network as well as reducing CO2 emissions from pipeline decommissioning and from sustainable transport of hydrogen.

This project will sustain and create new jobs, and play a key role in determining how to develop and operate an export pipeline which it is estimated could support up to 800 Scottish jobs and contribute toward establishing a hydrogen economy in Scotland that is estimated could support up to 100,000 jobs.

Net Zero Technology Transition Programme

In August 2021, the Net Zero Technology Centre was awarded £16.5million from the Scottish Government’s Energy Transition Fund. The award, match-funded by industry, will drive seven projects:

The projects are designed to develop the skills, technologies, and infrastructure that Scotland needs to deliver an affordable green economic recovery.

We don’t simply want to deliver net zero for the UK, we want to seize the full economic benefits of doing so in a global market with huge export potential – and maintain that advantage long into the future.

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