• Client: EC - DG Energy
  • Implementation period: 2018 - 2018 (Ongoing)
  • Geographic coverage: European Union

Can the injection of renewable gases into European gas networks support the energy transition, and what are the economic and technical implications?

The aim of this study is to obtain a better picture on the potential of biomethane and hydrogen to contribute to the decarbonisation of the EU energy system, the impacts this will have on gas infrastructure and the extent to which network operators and regulators are prepared to cope with these impacts. This will support the development of policies considering other developments in the European energy system, such as the coupling of the electricity and gas sectors and the electrification of energy demand.

The study leverages a number of approaches to provide an integral view of the implications of biomethane or hydrogen injection into gas networks: desk research is combined with the modelling of the European energy system, the cost-benefit analysis of increased use of renewable gases and the simulation of network tariffs. Additionally, several methods are used to collect knowledge from subject-matter experts and analyse the perspectives of actors in the energy sector, including the interview of network operators & national regulators as well as expert workshops.

The project is led by Trinomics in collaboration with Ludwig-Bölkow-Systemtechnik (LBST) and E3 Modelling (E3M). The project will run from December 2018 on and will finish by September 2019.

The key objectives of this study are:

  • To assess the potential of biomethane and renewable hydrogen to contribute to the decarbonisation of specific end-use sectors;
  • To assess the role that renewable gases and gas infrastructure can play in complementing electrifcation and making the energy transition as efficient as possible;
  • To analyse the impacts that increased use of biomethane and hydrogen will have on the gas transmission and distribution infrastructure;
  • To investigate the impact of different energy system storylines, developed in the previous study on Trans-European gas infrastructure in the light of the 2050 decarbonisation goals, on the utilisation of the gas infrastructure at Member State and regional level.