The Brussels-based Clean Hydrogen Partnership will fund the H2ORIZON study by leading hydrogen consultants to explore the role of hydrogen in decarbonizing energy on Valentia Island, especially around maritime use cases. The study will also examine the potential for business and other modes of transport to use hydrogen.
Valentia Island, and the surrounding areas, is already leading the way as a pioneering sustainable community with the recent completion of an energy masterplan and feasibility study into renewable and green technologies. This work was supported by GenComm, a research project which addresses the energy sustainability challenges of European communities through the implementation of smart hydrogen-based energy.
Leading hydrogen consultants, appointed by the Clean Hydrogen Partnership will explore various opportunities where hydrogen produced from renewable energy can complement the role of electrification in decarbonizing Valentia Island, for example, offering green hydrogen infrastructure for tourism and marine mobility and powering industry such as the local distillery.
In January 2020, the Valentia Energy Co-Operative was established with the aim of ensuring that the wider community works with stakeholders to find and develop clean energy solutions.
Welcoming the announcement, Colum O Connell, Chairman of the Valentia Island Energy Group, said, “What we are looking to introduce is a fundamental shift in how we think about decarbonization. Other governments around the world recognize the opportunities hydrogen can bring and are developing strategies to develop green hydrogen.
“The recently published Climate Action Plan 2023 included specific actions to enable the use of hydrogen across industry, enterprise and transport. However, we need more clarity at national level on what our strategy is. Valentia Island has been campaigning with our partners, Energy Co-Ops Ireland, to get more visibility for our green hydrogen vision.”
As one of the partners of the Clean Hydrogen Partnership, ESB will work closely with the consultants in identifying and planning green energy opportunities.
Aodhan McAleer, Hydrogen Manager at ESB, said, “At ESB, we are committed to empowering and supporting the communities we serve to achieve net zero. A key part of our Net Zero by 2040 strategy is the production and storage of zero carbon electricity and green hydrogen from our growing portfolio of wind and solar generation.
“As such, projects such as this in Valentia Island are critical to learning how our future energy system will work and benefit key industries such as marine transport as well as providing back-up generation. We look forward to working with Valentia Island stakeholders and thank them for allowing us to be part of their sustainable journey.”
Paul McCormack, GenComm Project Manager stated, “H2ORIZON is about utilizing green hydrogen to provide an energy catalyst to build stronger, resilient communities and using energy to ensure remote communities are connected.
“It is part of the work of GenComm-generating energy secure communities stimulating the green hydrogen economy through partnership, communication, wider engagement and promotion.”