When: 17 September, 2018

EHA joined a high level event of the Austrian EU presidency in Linz on September 17 2018 and signed  the Hydrogen Initiative Declaration.  That welcomed ” the range of opportunities of sustainable hydrogen technology in decarbonising the economy and ensuring safe, competitive, available and sustainable energy supply for the Energy
Union. signatories seek to focus ambitions and efforts in the following fields:
1. Sector integration and coupling
2. Short- and long-term energy storage
3. Direct injection into the gas-grid
4. Conversion of hydrogen to renewable methane
5. Transport and mobility

EU Commissioner Canete highlighted the role H2 in Europe’s energy system but urged the development of H2 supply chains.

Sylvia Knittel, Director, EU Energy Policy, Federal Ministry for Sustainability and Tourism presented the Austrian H2 Initiaitve Declaration that can be signed by public and private stakeholders.

Michal Kurtyke president of COP24 Decemebr 3 -14 ,2018  in Katowice pointed to the 1mln mln Polish EV target in 2030.  Poland put out the largest tender for  eletric buses,  1077  batttery or hydrogen powered.. Poland is producing 100.000 tons of by product hydrogen annually.

Simon Mueller IEA , pointed to the need to engage more countries in system integration and grid management as only Irleand and Denmark are leading the pack in the EU.

Michael Weinhold of Siemens Energy managment systems,  described the further decentralisation of Europe’s grid and the development of so called energy cells where digital, eletricity and gas networks are fully integrated. Consumers will need to be educated on sharing the right data.

Jean-Marc Leroy, Senior Executive Vice-President, External Relations, ENGIE referred to hydrogen as the missing link towards energy independcy. France commits to a tracebility system of hydrogen by 2020 and to 40% green hydrogen by 2028. Multinationals commitment is gathering momentum with the now 33 members of the Hydrogen Council.

On 18 September 2018 the use of hydrogen as a future‑oriented energy form was among the items on the agenda of the informal meeting of EU energy ministers. “The Austrian Presidency of the Council of the European Union proposed a Hydrogen Initiative that many member states approved of and signed”, said Elisabeth Köstinger, current chair of the EU energy minister meetings. “Under this initiative, the signatory states commit themselves to continue research and investment in the production and use of hydrogen as a future‑oriented technology”, Elisabeth Köstinger added. In Linz, where the informal meeting of energy ministers took place on 17 and 18 September, one of the most modern European hydrogen production plants is currently being built.

“In order to achieve the European‑wide 2030 climate and energy goals, renewable energy forms have to be strengthened and better integrated”, Elisabeth Köstinger emphasised. “A big challenge is also being able to use renewable energy at those times when the sun is not shining, the water level is low or the wind is not blowing. Therefore, energy storage solutions are crucial in order to stock energy and to store it in the case of overproduction.” According to Elisabeth Köstinger, renewable hydrogen could, in future, play an important role in this area. Moreover, she said, hydrogen constituted not only a potential future‑oriented technology for storing energy but its use as a vehicle fuel would also add to reducing the role of fossil energy sources in mobility. “With the Hydrogen Initiative we want to send out a strong signal for renewable hydrogen and a European-wide cooperation”, Elisabeth Köstinger said.

EU Commissioner Miguel Arias Cañete also welcomed the initiative of the Austrian Presidency of the Council of the European Union: “Green hydrogen offers significant potential for the decarbonisation of the European economy. The Commission warmly welcomes the Hydrogen Initiative as it will further harness the innovative drive across the EU.