Eni and Enel partner on green hydrogen projects

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Italian energy multinationals Enel and Eni are working together on projects to produce green hydrogen via electrolyzers powered by renewable energy.

The electrolyzers will be located near two Eni refineries where hydrogen appears to be the best decarbonisation option. Each of the two pilot projects will feature an electrolyzer of around 10MW and are expected to start generating hydrogen by 2022-2023.

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Francesco Starace, Enel Group CEO and general manager, said: “We are interested in exploring with Eni the promising green hydrogen sector.

“Together, we identified a couple of sites where we can start with the first projects. The overall system we have in mind will be working as a closed loop whereby the electrolyzer fed by renewable energy and the refinery will be at the same location, therefore avoiding the construction of complex transport infrastructure to move hydrogen around.

“We are looking forward to seeing hydrogen supplying Eni’s refinery and biorefinery processes, and are working to have the first operating system in place before the end of our current three-year plan.”

Eni CEO Claudio Descalzi said: “This partnership in green hydrogen is part of Eni’s broader energy transition strategy.

“Our goal is to accelerate the reduction of our carbon footprint by implementing the best applicable low carbon solution, either green or blue, to reduce our direct emissions as well as switching to bio products to supply our clients.”

In the green hydrogen segment, the Enel Group is also developing projects in Spain, Chile and the US. Should the expected economic improvements of the green hydrogen industry be confirmed, the group plans to grow its green hydrogen capacity to over 2GW by 2030.

In the hydrogen segment, Eni is also studying other projects in Italy and in the UK.