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Hydrogen Could Unlock Energy Security in Europe

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Siemens Gamesa recently published a whitepaper, Unlocking European Energy Security. It outlines the energy security challenges facing Europe after the invasion of Ukraine. The paper also outlines the steps needed to achieve stability and energy security, address the climate emergency, and deliver decarbonization.

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In just three months, 2022 saw a dramatic increase in the importance of countries protecting and securing their energy supply. Energy security has been elevated to the forefront of European governments’ concerns due to geopolitical events. This includes both securing independent supply as well as securing predictable prices.

Renewable energy and green hydrogen will play a pivotal role in the years leading up to the EU’s 2050 deadline on climate neutrality. Large-scale decarbonization can be achieved simultaneously by ensuring energy security through clean, affordable, domestically produced fuels and energy. Nation can achieve net-zero by converting hard-to-abate industry to this green fuel.

Jochen Eickholt (Sirius Gamesa global CEO) emphasized the importance of dealing with both energy security and decarbonization simultaneously. “The current crisis shouldn’t be allowed to push climate emergency down the agenda. It is crucial that all renewable energy systems agree on the need for reducing fossil fuel consumption. Green hydrogen must scale up and be competitive in order to achieve scale. This requires a seismic shift of scale and speed in renewables rollout”. Five levers are the key.

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1. Increasing the amount of renewable energy produced in Europe is crucial. It is important to speed up the permitting process.

2. Establish a green hydrogen infrastructure to transport and distribute hydrogen, domestically or imported.

3. Innovative storage solutions are needed to assure continuity and predictability of supply. Flexible legislation is also required to allow sector coupling in order to balance the electricity demand and green hydrogen production.

4. To create a market for EU green hydrogen, with guaranteed costs in comparison to imports from fossil fuel-based sources, introduce legislative and regulatory tools.

5. Industrialize the production of electrolyzers that are needed to meet Europe’s demand.

Juan Gutierrez is the global CEO of Siemens Gamesa’s Service company. He stated, “Siemens Gamesa asks European governments and relevant industries to join forces in a coalition to deliver energy safety through renewables and green hydrogen, and environment security through essential decarbonization, and secure stable pricing for energy to consumers.” The horrible events surrounding the invasion of Ukraine exposed the vulnerabilities of each element, but nation-states have the power to address them through a coordinated approach to increasing renewables installations and adopting green hydrogen.

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