With mounting geopolitical problems in the European theater, the cognoscenti have been pondering just where Europe would access hydrogen in quantities that would make the undertaking viable.
To this end, RINA, the inspection, certification and consulting engineering multinational, and AFRY, a European leader in engineering, design, and advisory services, have undertaken an initial study of how the Gulf region and Europe could be linked directly with a pipeline to transport low-carbon hydrogen, a key component in climate-friendly energy and industry systems of the future. The results indicate a transformative opportunity to fully unlock the Gulf's immense potential as a cost-effective source of low-carbon hydrogen for Europe.
By pairing abundant Renewable Energy Sources (RES) and Natural Gas reserves, the Gulf region is set to become a leading global producer of green and blue hydrogen, ammonia and other synthesis products.
The study envisions a suitable pipeline configuration that could transport 100 TWh or approximately 2.5 million tonnes of hydrogen annually. Moreover, by constructing additional pipelines of the same nature, the transport capacity could be significantly scaled up.
The cost of transporting hydrogen through this pipeline is initially seen at approximately 1.2 EUR/kg H2. The Gulf countries, in turn, could supply green and blue hydrogen to the economic hub of Europe at Levelized Costs Of Delivered Hydrogen (LCODH) of around 2.7 EUR/kg starting from the 2030s, decreasing to around 2.3 EUR/kg in the longer term.
Andrea Bombardi, Executive Vice President at RINA said: “Through the combined expertise of AFRY and RINA, this first-of-its-kind study considers routing alternatives, technical parameters and feasibility, especially for the deep-sea pipeline section, geo-strategic framework conditions and top-level economic estimates of a direct hydrogen pipeline link between the Gulf and Europe as an element of an integrated green energy and industry system across Europe and MENA. The findings of the study represent a decisive contribution to boost the hydrogen economy.