Creating a market for green hydrogen and making it a competitive energy source for the future is the main objective of North Adriatic Hydrogen Valley (NAHV). The project, which started last September and will run for 72 months, is part of the EU Horizon Europe research and innovation programme and aims to create the first transnational hydrogen ecosystem in Europe, covering the territories of three countries: Friuli Venezia Giulia in Italy, Slovenia e Croatia. About 20% of the renewable hydrogen produced is expected to be exchanged between the three partners.
NAHV has been awarded €25 million of funding by the Clean Hydrogen Partnership – a joint undertaking supporting research and innovation activities in hydrogen technologies in Europe – which involves a total of 37 Italian, Slovenian and Croatian organizations (companies, universities, research institutes) including, for the Italian side, Area Science Park, Regione Autonoma Friuli Venezia Giulia and University of Trieste. The consortium is led by HSE, Slovenia’s largest electricity producer and distributor.
The initiative will develop 17 pilot projects in different locations across all three partner territories with the aim of producing over 5,000 tons of renewable hydrogen per year for energy storage, distribution and consumption, thus accelerating the transition to renewable energy in three main pillars: hard-to-abate, energy and transport sectors. The design of the project encompasses the entire chain of the use of renewable hydrogen, from its production up to its end use in various sectors, mainly industry and land and maritime transport. For these reasons, the NAHV initiative has received the Seal of Excellence which is awarded to project proposals submitted under a Horizon Europe call and ranked above a predefined quality threshold. By introducing advanced hydrogen technologies as well as developing skills and infrastructure, the project also contributes to other key goals of the European Green Deal, mainly the decarbonization of major industrial sectors such as steel, cement and glass production.