Masdar and Austria’s Verbund in Green Hydrogen Collaboration

13.02.2023 - Masdar, a clean energy company based in Abu Dhabi, and Austria’s leading energy utility Verbund have signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) to develop pathways for producing and exporting green hydrogen to Central Europe, specifically Austria and southern Germany.

Mohamed Jameel Ramahi, Masdar CEO, commented: “Masdar has long pioneered green hydrogen as an energy source for the future and today we believe that future is upon us. We are committed to developing our green hydrogen business as we see it playing a significant role in the global energy transition.”

The company set up its green hydrogen business last December, with a goal of producing 1 million t/y by 2030. Abu Dhabi National Oil Company (ADNOC) has taken a leading 43% stake in the venture, with Mubadala holding 33% and Abu Dhabi National Energy (TAQA) taking the remaining 24%.

Masdar said 500,000 t/y of green hydrogen will be produced in Abu Dhabi, where local demand is forecast at about 200,000 t/y, and the remaining volumes will be exported. The other 500,000 t/y will be produced in “key geographies” that include Saudi Arabia and Oman, where there is significant solar and wind potential. Egypt and Morocco are also said to be attractive locations because of their access to infrastructure and status as export hubs.

Last month, Masdar, the Port of Amsterdam, SkyNRG — a Dutch producer of sustainable aviation fuel — terminal operator Evos Amsterdam and liquid storage supplier Zenith Energy signed an MoU to explore the development of a green hydrogen supply chain between Abu Dhabi and Amsterdam to support Dutch and European markets.

The focus is on production in Abu Dhabi and export to the Netherlands through Amsterdam, delivering the green hydrogen to sectors that include aviation, steelmaking and shipping.

Meanwhile Verbund has already launched several flagship projects to expand its value chain into green hydrogen, including what it said will be one of the world’s largest electrolysis plants, which is part of the H2Future project being undertaken with steel and technology group Voestalpine, technology company Siemens, Austrian Power Grid, competence center K1-MET and research institute TNO.

Another is the Blue Danube project, where the goal is to create a trans-European green hydrogen chain. The first phase is focused on producing and using green hydrogen in Austria and neighboring Bavaria, the second will focus on production from renewable electricity in southeastern Europe, then transporting the gas via the river Danube to hydrogen users in Austria and Germany.

The International Energy Agency said in its Global Hydrogen Review 2022 that meeting governments’ climate pledges alone will require 34 million t/y of green hydrogen by 2030.

Author: Elaine Burridge, Freelance Journalist