Trans-regional idea jam on hydrogen

28 April 2020 - Published by Stig Marthinsen

Periscope partners met industrial players in Groningen to conduct a trans-regional idea jam on hydrogen and other offshore and port-related opportunities.

The CEO of Groningen Seaports welcomed participants, giving an overview of the current challenges and opportunities in the sector, with specifics on the Energy Port Eemshaven. He explained the core tasks of maintenance, attracting customers, two-way exploration, and public responsibility. He then outlined the three main groupings of opportunities for the ports, being energy and data, chemicals, and the circular economy. He followed with the vision of the region and sector for 2030.

The challenges related to the scaling up of offshore wind were discussed, for example, larger turbines, longer blades, heavier components, larger support vessels, larger installation vessels, larger offshore wind farms, longer distance from shore, and increased water depth.

There then followed an international idea jam on the greening of ports, with submissions and input from several ports around the North Sea. For example, the Energyport Eemshaven is both a power point and a balancing hub, the Dataport Eemshaven positions itself as the best data centre location in Europe, Groningen Innovation Port names itself as the Harbour of Talent, and Delfzijl is positioning itself as Tomorrow’s Circular Hotspot.

It was agreed that the main inputs to the reduction in CO2 by 49% in 2030 were green energy (sun/wind), realising connections, other ways of production, biomass, and other types of collaboration.

During the afternoon, the focus turned to hydrogen, as the northern Netherlands already has 33 planned projects in hydrogen until 2030, with established physical connections to Norway, Germany and Denmark. The northern Netherlands has positioned itself as an international hydrogen hub, with a hydrogen investment plan (HEAVENN). The New Energy Coalition presented on the switch to hydrogen and the role of seaports and maritime applications within it. RISE presented on offshore charging stations and the charging of offshore drones. Marin presented on autonomous sailing, followed by a visit to the Marin testing facility. The afternoon concluded with discussion on international business cases