The incorporation of Germany into the European hydrogen corridor proposed at the beginning by President Pedro Sánchez as an alternative to the Midcat gas pipeline, vetoed by France, is undoubtedly a very important boost to gradually implement this clean energy and thus achieve that the European Union disengages definitely Russian energy, on which it has depended for decades.
The one known as H2Med takes an important step forward when Germany joins this hydroduct project between the Iberian Peninsula and the rest of the continent. Berlin’s accession to this infrastructure with the ambition of becoming pan-European was announced on Sunday by Chancellor Olaf Scholz at the end of the Franco-German summit held in Paris. The hydrogen submarine tube, which will connect Barcelona with Marseille, will extend to Germany and on the horizon there is the possibility that it could reach other countries in central and eastern Europe. The fact that this green corridor ends up becoming a strategic infrastructure will undoubtedly be a very important argument for the project to obtain European funding. The accolade represented by the entry of Germany plays very well in favor of the geopolitical objective of the European Union increasing its energy autonomy and helping to combat the climate crisis.
The addition of Germany to the H2Med project will bring this energy to the center of Europe
Everything indicates that Germany will be the European State that will end up taking over the most hydrogen exports from the Iberian Peninsula, due to the size of its industrial sector. That is why for Scholz the H2Med is an “excellent project for the future”. In fact, Germany will become a strategic partner of the three countries – Spain, Portugal and France – that are driving the project.
Last December, the top political leaders of these three countries jointly presented this initiative to the President of the European Commission in Alicante so that it may be considered a project of common interest and that community funds cover half of its cost. The Spanish-French summit held a few days ago in Barcelona ratified the will of Sánchez and Macron to carry out this green energy corridor, which could be a reality in 2030. Technically the project consists of two cross-border infrastructures, one between Celorico da Beira , in Portugal, and Zamora, and another in the form of an underwater tube between Barcelona and Marseille. Its estimated cost is 2,500 million euros, plus another 4,670 million for infrastructure in the Iberian Peninsula. It is expected to transport two million tons of green hydrogen per year, 10% of the total consumed in Europe.
President Pedro Sánchez has strongly played the trick of promoting this clean energy from Spain to Europe, making our country a hub for hydrogen distribution. H2Med has been Sánchez’s bet after seeing how the objective of reactivating the Midcat land gas pipeline, through the Pyrenees, found French opposition. The Spanish, French and Portuguese gas companies joined the project weeks ago, ready for H2Med to allow green hydrogen to arrive from southern Europe to northern Europe, and now German gas operators have also expressed their firm support.
The war in Ukraine has forced the EU to look for alternative energy sources that are not a provisional option but a stable and future option compared to Russian gas and oil, and that help boost the fight against the climate emergency. Green hydrogen – which is produced through renewable and emission-free energy and makes it possible to replace fossil fuels in sectors such as industry – may end up being an important part of the solution to Europe’s energy problem. Projects such as H2Med, in which Spain plays a fundamental role, must materialize in a green corridor that supplies clean energy to half the continent.