Denmark has been selected for the HyBalance project as the country focuses on renewable energy.
In 2012, Denmark framed one of the most ambitious energy strategies in Europe, with the target of producing at least 50 per cent of its electricity consumption from wind in 2020, eliminating all fossil energy use in the heating and electricity sectors by 2035, and to becoming fossil energy independent by in 2050 by substituting these with a mix of renewable energy sources.
With some of the best wind conditions in the world, the plan is for wind energy to make up a very large part of the energy mix by 2050. In 2015 Denmark has set a record-breaking year for wind power generation, generating 42 per cent of the country’s electricity consumption needs. This is probably the highest ever figure for any country, which itself is up on the previous record – also held by Denmark – of 39 per cent. According to Energinet.dk, the western part of the Danish electricity system produced more wind power than the total consumption in Western Denmark for an annual total of 1,460 hours (16%). This situation makes the storage of wind energy very relevant, and hydrogen can play a pivotal role here.
Important centre of hydrogen development
During the last 20 years Denmark has managed to become an important centre of hydrogen and fuel cell research and development. The Danish state has provided support for hydrogen and fuel cell research through various energy programs. Most recently, the Danish government has exempted hydrogen cars from taxes for 3 years (from 2016), after which there will be a gradual phasing in of taxes.
In 2016, Denmark will operate 10 hydrogen refueling stations, which makes it the country with the best coverage in the world.
In the northern part of Denmark, close to the vicinity of Hobro, salt caverns can be used for large-scale storage of hydrogen in the later stages of the project.
These circumstances make Denmark – and Hobro – an ideal site to demonstrate a Power-to-Hydrogen concept.