The center of excellence and innovation of smart hydrogen energy science in Latvia offers entrepreneurs from the USA, Great Britain, Estonia, Ukraine, Bulgaria and Lithuania to jointly create smart energy systems for the use of hydrogen technology and the transfer of Latvian scientific hydrogen technological solutions.
Smart energy aims to make demand sectors of the economy climate neutral, covering buildings, transport and industry. Hydrogen plays an important role in the decarbonisation of the energy sector. As an energy carrier, it plays a crucial role in solving the problems of renewable energy resources, if the creation of national and regional energy communities or ecosystems is supported by applying innovative hydrogen solutions.
Based on the EU study “Study on Opportunities arising from the inclusion of Hydrogen Energy Technologies in the National Energy & Climate Plans (Ref. FCH/OP/Contract 234”) https://www.fch.europa.eu/publications/opportunities -hydrogen-energy-technologies-considering-national-energy-climate-plans ] and the calculations of specialists of the Center of Excellence and Innovation of Smart Hydrogen Energy Science, the potential benefits of the Latvian economy increasing the production of renewable energy and including hydrogen energy technologies in the national energy and climate plan (2020 -2027), could make a significant contribution to achieving the set climate neutrality goals.
Assuming that projects in the production of renewable electricity will be implemented in the scope of the permits issued by the Ministry of Economy until 2021, no less than 1400 MW of electricity generation capacity with RES would be installed. Indicatively, investments of ~3,048 million would be attracted. euro. This would provide an added value to the national economy of ~326 million. euro per year, emission savings of ~693,000 tCO2/year, and would also create 12,820 new jobs.
The president of the Latvian Academy of Sciences, Ivars Kalvinņš, says: “The establishment of the center of excellence and innovation of smart hydrogen energy science confirms the previous performance of the Latvian Hydrogen Association and demonstrates the international competitiveness of Latvian scientists, which must continue to be supported by the state, including from the newly established Latvian Innovation Support Fund. Hydrogen, as an emission-free energy carrier and an important element of the smart energy system, plays an important role in the decarbonization of the sector, filling the gap between the demand and supply of renewable energy resources and supporting the achievement of the climate neutrality goals of the common sectors of the national economy.”
Hydrogen Europe board member Aivars Starikovs states: “The correlation of the EU Hydrogen Strategy with the national energy climate plans confirms that the smart hydrogen energy policy can not only replace the electricity imported into the country, but also export energy resources, including in the form of green hydrogen. According to the calculations of EU experts, the technically possible amount of renewable electricity in Latvia is 371 TWh per year, the potential of renewable electricity production compared to the forecasted electricity consumption in 2030 would be 5162%.”
Comment from JSC Latvenergo Research and Development Director Māras Balož: “Until 2025, Latvenergo plans to implement a pilot project for obtaining and using hydrogen, during which it is planned to invest and demonstrate both methane and hydrogen mixing technologies, the installation of a hydrogen electrolyzer, and the sale of hydrogen to other industries, for example for public transport in the urban environment. The use of hydrogen technologies will allow to ensure the company’s sustainable development and further successful operation in the energy sector, while reducing CO2 emissions. We hope that participation in the Smart Hydrogen Energy Science and Innovation Center and cooperation with the center’s colleagues will allow us to use their expertise and experience in cross-border hydrogen technology research and successfully prepare project applications for direct fundraising for the creation of smart energy communities from the European Commission’s framework programs FP7, Horizon 2020 and others. ”
Currently, several organizations and companies have united in the Smart Hydrogen Energy Science and Innovation Center – Latvian Academy of Sciences, Institute of Physical Energy, Institute of Solid State Physics of the University of Latvia, Latvian University of Agriculture, Latvenergo, SIA Ventspils nafta termināls, Jelgava bus park, Virši-A, Siemens Energy Global GmbH&Co. KG, Worthington Cylinders GmbH, Ballard Power Systems Europe, Stargate Hydrogen OÜ, MRK Serviss, SIA Trezors, SIA Intra-GT, Naco Technologies. The Center’s operation is supported by the Wind Energy Association, Latvian Chamber of Commerce and Industry, University of Aberdeen, Latvian Association of Municipalities and Hydrogen Europe.
Įrts Greiškalns represents the Latvian Water Harvesting Association.