May 19, 2022

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Technology – Germany and Norway are studying the construction of a hydrogen pipeline

A view of the Norwegian capital, Oslo Photo: AFP

In order to reduce dependence on oil and gas supplies from Russia, the federal government wants to intensify the energy partnership with Norway – as well as study the construction of a pipeline for this.

In order to reduce dependence on oil and gas supplies from Russia, the federal government wants to intensify its energy partnership with Norway – as well as study the construction of a hydrogen pipeline. Economy Minister Robert Habeck (the Greens) signed a joint declaration on cooperation on energy issues with Norwegian Prime Minister Jonas Gare Strei on Wednesday during his visit to Norway, the Economy Ministry in Berlin announced. In it, “it was agreed to cooperate closely in order to implement as soon as possible hydrogen imports in large quantities into Germany from Norway.”

In light of Russia’s illegal attack on Ukraine, it is now more important than ever to “quickly reduce Europe’s dependence on Russian imports,” the ministry said in a joint statement. Thus, a rapid energy transition, the increasing expansion of renewable energies, and a significant increase in energy efficiency is essential. In addition, the future transition from conventional natural gas to green hydrogen or hydrogen derivatives such as ammonia “must start faster now”.

In the future, hydrogen is set to increasingly replace fossil fuels in factories or as a fuel in the transportation sector. However, the energy source used to generate hydrogen plays a special role – we are talking about green hydrogen when it comes from renewable sources.

“In this context, the two countries also wish to consider the construction of a pipeline from Norway to Germany, which could be used to transport green hydrogen in the future,” the Federal Ministry of Economy said. To this end, Norway and Germany would like to quickly conduct a feasibility study to show whether and under what aspects this additional transport infrastructure makes sense.

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When making plans to build the pipeline, “the role that blue hydrogen can play as a transition to green hydrogen” should also be checked. We talk about blue hydrogen when it is obtained in pure form using natural gas. Meanwhile, the ministry added that both countries understand that “this can only be a transition to push green hydrogen faster and make it more economical.”

Vice Chancellor Habeck traveled to Oslo on Wednesday for talks in the Norwegian capital about diversifying German energy imports. He previously indicated that increased imports of liquefied natural gas (LNG) would be necessary in the short term, but also closer cooperation in expanding hydrogen and climate protection technologies.

In the evening, Habeck stressed that Norway and Germany are “close partners in the energy transition and climate protection.” “We want to deepen this partnership further,” he stressed. “The joint declaration we adopted today confirms this. Our two countries agree that when it comes to hydrogen, we have to think about European hydrogen infrastructure from the start.”

Norway is the second most important gas supplier in the European Union after Russia. Between 20 and 25 percent of natural gas in Europe and the United Kingdom comes from Norway, and between 45 and 50 percent comes from Russia.

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