In 2022 the initiative will aim to make further progression in developing the hydrogen backbone and thus its agenda will focus on developing techno-economic assessments of hydrogen supply corridors.

This is a key aspect of the initiative and could be a key method in unlocking a booming hydrogen economy.

Read more: Plans for European Hydrogen Backbone expanded
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European Hydrogen Backbone: How a dedicated hydrogen infrastructure can be created

The assessments will also explore the potential role of regional cooperation by infrastructure operators in carrying them out.

Alongside these assessments, the EHB will be updating, expanding, and digitising its network maps while revamping the website to provide easier access to key insights.

To enable the faster rollout of the EHB, the group has also welcomed six new members including Amber Grid (Lithuania), Bulgartransgaz (Bulgaria), Conexus Baltic Grid (Latvia), Gassco (Norway), Plinacro (Croatia), and REN (Portugal).

In doing so, the initiative now covers various more regions in Europe and will enable the group to collectively achieve its shared vision of a climate-neutral Europe enable through a renewable and low-carbon hydrogen market.

Despite being a pan-European hydrogen infrastructure project, the initiative revealed to H2 View in December that a key part of the future is connecting with the continent’s neighbours such as the Middle East and Africa.

Anthony Wang, a representative from the European Hydrogen Backbone initiative, told H2 View, “It’s very much the intention to interconnect to non-European continents, even probably before 2040.

“It’s a big part of the story because Europe tends to not be the best continent for renewables, relatively speaking if you compare it to Africa and the Middle East.”

European Hydrogen Backbone: The ever-evolving vision for an interconnected hydrogen network

One of the most crucial aspects in building the hydrogen economy is ensuring a solid infrastructure is in place. In Europe, where hydrogen could be transported across the continent at cost-competitive prices, it is crucial to have the required infrastructure to carry hydrogen to companies and industries that need it most.

As revealed by Wang, repurposing the existing gas pipelines across Europe could create cost competitive hydrogen across the continent. This interconnects countries with vast renewable energy generation potential with other countries with less potential to create a system that allows cheap hydrogen to be transported in the most cost-efficient way across Europe.

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