Green hydrogen, a key asset for decarbonisation and sustainable mobility in Spain

– Funseam and Exolum held a seminar earlier today attended by energy leaders and experts to analyse the current state of maturity of green hydrogen technologies and their potential to promote the decarbonisation of society, with a special emphasis on sustainable mobility.

Earlier today, Funseam and Exolum held a seminar on green hydrogen and sustainable mobility. The event was attended by energy experts to analyse the essential role of green hydrogen in the decarbonisation process and the promotion of more sustainable mobility.

The seminar, which was organised around four round-table discussions, kicked off with an official welcome speech given by Rosa García, Exolum’s Chairwoman, who highlighted the importance of hydrogen as a solution to help decarbonise sectors that are difficult to electrify, such as the energy-intensive industry and heavy-duty mobility. She also pointed out, however, that significant challenges lie ahead, such as the regulatory and tax framework, the creation of new demand and technological developments, which must be addressed to ensure the success of green hydrogen.

During his speech, Joan Batalla, general manager of Funseam, focused on the strategic relevance of hydrogen, which will allow Spain to progress in its energy sovereignty, in addition to boosting a cost-effective and efficient global decarbonisation process. According to Batalla, this will enable nations to meet their climate goals, foster economic growth and generate sustainable jobs.

Renewable hydrogen opportunities in Spain

The first round table, moderated by Joan Batalla, addressed the perspectives for the deployment of green hydrogen in Spain. High-profile participants such as Pedro Casero of the Aragonesa del Hidrógeno Foundation, and Eduardo Sañudo, General Manager of Vopak/Terquimsa, expressed their views on the potential of green hydrogen to become a key element for the integration of renewable energies in the electricity grid and as a means of decarbonising the industrial and transportation sectors. The speakers stressed the fact that the sector is going through a cautious period, in which it is important to be realistic about project perspectives, as well as the need to scale and develop technologies and to implement the logistics chain as a key factor

The role of renewable hydrogen in the decarbonisation of transport

Hydrogen’s contribution to the decarbonisation of mobility was the focal point of the second discussion at the event, led by Patricia Prieto, Exolum’s Project Developer H2. Participants included leaders in the automotive, shipping and oil industries, such as José López Tafall, from the Spanish Association of Automobile and Truck Manufacturers, Elena Seco, from the Spanish Shipowners’ Association, Andreu Puñet, from the Spanish Association of Petroleum Product Operators, and Eugenia Sillero, from Gasnam, who discussed the opportunities and challenges of adopting green hydrogen in the different means of transport, as well as the need for a clear, stable regulatory framework that favours the profitability and competitiveness of ongoing projects.

Technology and innovation in sustainable mobility

The third round table of the day, moderated by Eduardo Cembrano, manager of the Energy Industry Area of CIRCE (Spanish Centre for Information and Business Creation), focused on the role of innovation and technology in the achievement of sustainable mobility. Emilio Nieto, from the CNH (National Hydrogen Centre), José María Sánchez Hervás, from CIEMAT (the Research Centre for Energy, Environment and Technology), Ekain Fernández, in charge of H2 Technologies at TECNALIA, and María Retuerto, researcher at the CSIC (Spanish National Research Council), discussed emerging technologies in green hydrogen and their transformative potential for the transportation sector, as well as the role of industrial research and development in the process. In this regard, they stressed the importance of training hydrogen experts to enable the development of the technologies required for implementation of this process.

Renewable hydrogen as a business strategy

Hydrogen development as an element of corporate strategy was the topic of the last discussion at the event, led by Antonio Pérez-Collar, president of VAHIA (Alicante’s Hydrogen Valley). Speakers such as Maribel Rodríguez, Repsol Hydrogen Business Development Manager, Olivia Infantes, Cepsa Manager of H2 Regulatory Affairs, David Álvaro, Airbus National Engineering and Technology Representative, and Rafael Calvera, Chairman of Calvera Hydrogen, talked about the opportunity that green hydrogen posed for companies in their decarbonisation journey and highlighted Spain’s excellent position to lead renewable hydrogen production.

Jorge Lanza, Exolum’s CEO, closed the event, emphasising the sector’s current situation: “We are going through a cautious and realistic phase, but this should not dampen our enthusiasm.” He also stressed the need to effectively promote collaboration between the public and private sectors and among companies. “Now is the time to develop hydrogen for mobility. There are many challenges ahead, but what’s most important is to get started”, he added.