12 May, 2015

Time to build a Power to Gas pilot plant in Sweden - will increase the proportion of renewables, reduce emissions and pave the way for more wind power

The results from a unique study on the potential to use Power to Gas in Sweden are due to be presented today. The conditions differ from one part of the country to another although it is clear that Power to Gas can make use of surplus wind power in a variety of ways: production of hydrogen gas, storage of the surplus in the gas grid and/or expansion of biogas production.

Gotland, Falkenberg and Piteå have been examined as part of the study and all the sites have what is required to be considered as a potential site for the country's first Power to Gas pilot plant. What is required now is regional initiative and commitment to make the plant a reality.

More renewable power

"Power to Gas would at each of the locations contribute to societal benefit, more renewable power production and collaboration between different energy players. Now that we have established this we can also take the next step and work to bring about the construction of a pilot plant at one of the sites," said Johan Zettergren, Vice President Marketing and Business Development at Swedegas.

What the selected sites have in common is large-scale expansion plans for wind power and the aim of increasing the use of biofuels. Otherwise the conditions differ. The study shows that Gotland already has a surplus of electricity from wind power during certain periods. The region also has plans to increase the use of biogas and local industry that generates high levels of carbon dioxide emissions. Falkenberg has good access to a gas infrastructure, plans are in place for the expansion of wind power and a hydrogen gas filling station is being constructed. Piteå also has wide-reaching wind power plans and good access to forest materials for renewable energy production. Although it already has a surplus of electricity it also has a high level of energy use and high concentrations of carbon dioxide emissions.  

The study has been conducted by ÅF at the request of the infrastructure company Swedegas and a number of energy bodies. The study has been supported by the Swedish Energy Agency via the Energy Research Institute.

Fact file – what is Power to Gas?

There is no lack of renewable energy. The challenge is to be found in making the renewable energy accessible where it is needed, when it is needed and at a competitive price. Power to Gas is an energy system that makes full use of the potential of renewable energy, such as wind power. Sweden is facing large-scale expansion of wind power. Although there will be an increasing number of occasions on which there will be surplus production and there will also be periods when there is no wind, which will require rapid access to alternative forms of power production.

Instead of allowing the surplus from wind power to go to waste, it could instead generate hydrogen gas through electrolysation of water. The hydrogen gas is then used to store energy that is available when required and/or increase the biomethane yield in biogas production. Utilising surplus power and transforming it into biogas will pave the way for even more widespread expansion of wind power. At the same time the biogas yield from existing biomass will be doubled.

Power to Gas has attracted a great deal of attention internationally and some 40 facilities are already in use or under construction in Europe, of which half are in Germany.

For further information, please contact

Saila Horttanainen, Vice President Corporate Communications, Swedegas, +46 70 622 76 06

Information about Power to Gas and the reports are available at www.swedegas.se

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