Spain's existing gas network has the potential to accommodate a gas blend with up to 20% hydrogen, according to a study conducted by the Spanish gas association, Sedigas. The CavendisH2 project, undertaken in collaboration with Bip Consulting, analyzed the feasibility and costs of adapting the country's gas infrastructure to facilitate the blending of hydrogen at different concentrations.
The study revealed that an investment of EUR 703 million (USD 752.6 million) would be required to retrofit the existing gas network for a 20% hydrogen blend. This investment, spread over an estimated amortization period of 20 years, represents 2% of the annual regulated costs of the gas system. The figures indicate the potential for Spain's gas grid, which is deemed modern and highly compatible with hydrogen, to contribute to the incorporation of renewable gases into the country's energy model.
The CavendisH2 study examined investment requirements for different hydrogen blends, including 5%, 10%, and 20% hydrogen concentrations. For a 5% hydrogen blend, an investment of EUR 92 million would be necessary, while the cost would rise to EUR 305 million for a 10% hydrogen blend. The study emphasizes that these investment amounts exclude the costs of retrofitting end-user equipment, as they are not part of the transmission or distribution infrastructure.
Spain's gas network, equipped with modern infrastructure, comprises seven regasification plants, six international connections, over 14,000 km of transport networks, 80,000 km of distribution networks, and nearly 8 million supply points. Sedigas highlights the country's potential to leverage these assets for the deployment of renewable gases, emphasizing the need for streamlined permitting and stimulating measures for hydrogen projects.
Sedigas President Joan Batalla noted Spain's advantageous position with high production capacity for renewable hydrogen due to natural resource conditions and a robust gas network. While Spain's current regulations permit the injection of 5% renewable hydrogen gas blends, the government acknowledges the potential impact on the intrinsic value of green hydrogen. The study's findings contribute to the ongoing dialogue about the role of hydrogen blending in Spain's energy transition.