Axpo and ENEGO consider 100 MW green hydrogen production plant in Sicily

09.04.2024 - Axpo has signed a cooperation agreement with French energy investor ENEGO to study the feasibility of a 100 MW green hydrogen plant in Sicily, it was announced today. The project shall be located in the Priolo-Augusta industrial complex on the island’s east coast. Contributing to the creation of a so-called ‘hydrogen valley’ running between Catania and Siracusa, the new plant would help meet demand for green from industries in the surrounding area. For Axpo, this is a further step in its strategy of playing an active role in the development of the green hydrogen economy in Switzerland and Europe.

Axpo will assess the viability of a 100 MW green hydrogen production plant in south-east Sicily, working with HYNEGO which is a part of the ENEGO Holding, a French investor in the energy transition. Depending on demand, it would be possible to expand the plant’s capacity to up to 300 MW. The plant would be located in the Priolo-Augusta petrochemical complex and produce green hydrogen for local industry and transportation. Its construction would also help create a so-called ‘hydrogen valley’ in Sicily, which could also connect directly to the European hydrogen network as part of the European Hydrogen Backbone (EHB) initiative. 

International cooperation for Sicily and the EU 

Axpo Head of Hydrogen Guy Bühler said: "We’re delighted to be working with ENEGO. This project is important for decarbonisation in the region, and especially in the Priolo-Augusta district, which includes an industrial site of national importance. The grey hydrogen currently used by its refineries is produced using natural gas. This plant would be able to replace that with CO2-free hydrogen.” ENEGO Holding CEO Alfonso Morriello said: "Today’s announcement is an important milestone for the HYNEGO Priolo-Augusta project, which originated with the cooperation of many local entities and the scientific expertise of the University of Catania’s Engineering Department. All the project’s stakeholders are committed to bringing the competitive advantage of green hydrogen to the local economy. Ours is a pioneering hydrogen project for Sicily and will make an important contribution to the EU's decarbonisation targets."   

Hydrogen projects in Switzerland and Europe

This latest initiative underlines Axpo's commitment to promoting sustainable energy technologies and the transition to a low-carbon future. In the following months, Axpo and ENEGO will undertake a feasibility study to consolidate the project’s costs and business plan. Axpo is also working with the Australian company IGE to develop one of the largest hydrogen production facilities in Italy, in central Abruzzo’s Peligna Valley. In addition, the first hydrogen-powered passenger vessel on Switzerland’s Lake Lucerne is being planned in collaboration with the SGV shipping company. As part of this project, Axpo will supply the green hydrogen needed to operate the boat. The hydrogen will be produced locally at a new production facility in nearby Bürglen. Axpo is also part of a mobility initiative in France. The "Arve Hydrogène Mobilité" (Arv'Hy) project will allow hydrogen-powered vehicles to be refuelled at an H2 filling station from the first quarter of 2025. In addition, Axpo recently presented the potential of hydrogen, particularly in Switzerland, in a white paper, thereby underlining its expertise in the field of the green energy carrier.

Axpo Holding AG

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