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January, 23rd 2022

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NOV 30
11:00

Snam to invest massively in H2 transport network

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Italian firm Snam will invest €23 billion ($26 billion) in the 2021-2030 period to repurpose its gas infrastructure pipelines for hydrogen and other so-called green gases, transforming its vast gas network into “a multi-commodity infrastructure” able to transport not only gas but also biomethane and hydrogen. About €12 billion will be spent to make the network H2-ready, the company says in its investment plan for the next decade.

Snam will invest €3 billion over the next five years to start building the first piece of a hydrogen backbone to connect Italy to Germany. This will involve repurposing 2,700 kilometres of network from Mazara del Vallo to Passo Gries and Tarvisio for the transport of hydrogen from Italy to northern Europe.

“This is the first step to enable exports to northern Europe, Germany more specifically,” the company says in its report monitored by Kallanish. It also represents the first route to transport hydrogen from North Africa and southern Italy “to higher demand centres…consolidating Italy's potential to become a hub for renewable energy produced in North Africa and the Middle East," ceo Marco Alvará comments.

To this purpose, the company is securing the share capital of gas pipelines linking Algeria, Tunisia and Italy and is buying a 49.9% stake from Eni in two companies that manage the pipelines connecting these countries, an agreement considered strategic to build a hydrogen backbone between North Africa and Italy (see Kallanish 30 November).

The company will also evolve towards a multi-commodity energy storage company capable of storing green gases such as natural gas, biomethane and hydrogen. Snam will upgrade its infrastructure by investing €5 billion over the next decade.

Total investments in the 2021-2025 period will stand at €8.1 billion, €700 million more compared to the 2020-2024 plan. Amongst other upgrade and maintenance activities, by 2025 Snam plans to add 1,300 kilometres of “hydrogen-ready” pipelines to its existing network.

“With regards to investments to adapt the infrastructure to a 'hydrogen ready' perspective, to date almost all of Snam's pipelines are capable of transporting up to 100% hydrogen based on ASMEB31.12 regulation. Approximately 70% of these pipes can transport pure hydrogen with no or limited reductions on the maximum operating pressure,” Alvará adds.

Natalia Capra France