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France and Germany discover widespread floor on carbon-free hydrogen – EURACTIV.com

On the event of the Franco-German Council of Ministers on Sunday (January 22), the leaders of the 2 nations insisted on the elaboration of a “widespread roadmap” for carbon-free hydrogen through which hydrogen produced from nuclear takes its full share.

The query of viable applied sciences for the event of carbon-free hydrogen has been bothering Franco-German executives for a number of months. France insists that the European Union acknowledge the position of low-carbon hydrogen, produced from nuclear energy, in attaining its decarbonization targets. On the opposite facet of the Rhine, Germany pleaded for a strict definition of carbon-free hydrogen, produced from renewable energies.

However on Sunday, following the Franco-German Council of Ministers, following the celebration of the diamond marriage ceremony anniversary of the Elysée friendship treaty, the 2 nations appear to have come to an settlement: “ whereas respecting the variations between our nationwide power manufacturing”, “we are going to guarantee […] that renewable and low-carbon hydrogen might be taken into consideration within the decarbonization targets set at European degree”reads the joint assertion.

After rain the nice climate

This new paradigm is a revolution for European hydrogen, after a long-standing dispute.

On the finish of November, the French Prime Minister, Elisabeth Borne, went to Berlin to satisfy her counterpart, Olaf Scholz, with the intention to reassure on the widespread way forward for the 2 nations, specifically when it comes to power. The 2 leaders had agreed to respect the precept of “technological neutrality”.

In brief, Germany acknowledged the position that nuclear energy can play in attaining the targets of decarbonising the European economic system, whereas France mustn’t hinder the event of renewable energies.

However the state of affairs has turn out to be tense as the tip of the yr holidays strategy.

In the course of the discussions within the EU Vitality Council on December 19, 2022, the French Minister for Vitality Transition, Agnès Pannier-Runacher, certainly castigated the place “hypocrite” of his German counterpart, Robert Habeck, on his refusal to incorporate low-carbon hydrogen within the growth targets for renewable hydrogen.

The truth is, a brand new article allowed low-carbon hydrogen to combine the gasoline directive which legislates on the event of hydrogen inside the group.

By introducing this text within the European textual content, the Czech Republic wished, exactly, to report the brand new Franco-German strategy. However Germany was unable to reply favorably.

At the moment, the hatchet appears definitively buried and Germany is taking a large step in the direction of France and its European allies on this space (Romania, Poland, Slovakia, Slovenia, Croatia, Bulgaria and Hungary). The 2 nations appear decided to “constructing a resilient European hydrogen market”because of “a standard strategy and strategic roadmap”.

It stays to be seen how this new cooperation will translate into the negotiations between the European Parliament, the Member States and the European Fee that are presently going down on the “gasoline directive”. As a result of if the German place evolves, it’s not sure that that of Luxembourg for instance, a fervent enemy of nuclear energy, doesn’t evolve accordingly.

Maybe the conclusions of the joint Franco-German working group on hydrogen, anticipated by the tip of April 2023, will present refractory nations with the mandatory insights.

Extension of the H2 Med venture

The 2 main financial powers of the EU drive the purpose house with the announcement of the extension of the brand new H2 Med hydrogen pipeline venture to Germany, the target of which is to have the ability to transport 10% of the consumption of carbon-free hydrogen European by 2030.

This “wonderful venture for the long run”, in line with Chancellor Olaf Scholz, replaces the embarrassing MidCat venture, of which France has turn out to be the destroyer. Its defenders, akin to Germany, Spain and Portugal needed a gasoline pipeline, and why not hydrogen, to cross the Pyrenees from Spain, to achieve the middle of Europe.

However for Emmanuel Macron, the “technique that underpinned the MidCat was not good” he repeated through the press convention following the Council of Ministers, and the passage in the midst of the Pyrenees mountain vary was unacceptable. France has due to this fact all the time refused to relaunch the venture.

On the event of the Summit of the nations of southern Europe, EU MED in Alicante in the beginning of December, the MidCat lastly grew to become the BarMar, then the H2 Med, with a place a lot “ easier to defend for France, confides the President of the Republic. It’s certainly a query of constructing a hydrogen pipeline which passes by way of the Mediterranean “port to port”.

The venture can also be within the working to be acknowledged as being of widespread curiosity or mutual curiosity at European degree and thus profit from further EU funding.

Additionally, “We intend to collectively create a Franco-German dialogue platform on infrastructure for battery charging and hydrogen refueling”stated the executives of their joint assertion.

Lastly, if the President and the Chancellor affirmed that they had been working collectively to reform the European electrical energy market, no widespread place was introduced, specifically on the decoupling of the costs of gasoline and low-carbon electrical energy.

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