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Molecules – The Eurogas Newsletter (July 2021)

Editorial: Didier Holleaux, Eurogas President

Dear readers,

With the recent launch of the European Commission’s Fit for 55 package, many of you will still be keeping busy. That’s been the case at Eurogas as we prepare for these crucial years in EU energy legislation.

For this edition of Molecules our Policy Director, Andreas Guth, has shared his thoughts on the package at this stage of our review. His analysis considers low-hanging fruit that could be leveraged through the Energy Efficiency Directive.

We also have contributions from our new members on their work towards emissions reductions targets. Zoltan Elek, CEO of Landwärme, a biomethane trading company, explains the benefits of biomethane as an energy source, for storage and for net negative emissions.

In our efforts to fully decarbonise gas networks we also have a welcome contribution from Eurogas member Kayrros. The company’s co-founder and Chief Analyst, Antoine Halff, explains their Methane Watch technology, which uses satellite monitoring to trace leaks back to their source.

Jori Ringman, Chair of the European Net Zero Alliance (ENZA) points out the decarbonisation opportunities in cross-sectoral cooperation and synergies. As stressed by Jori, the new legislation presents an opportunity to remove barriers to sector integration.

And finally, in the latest Gas Tech Talk, Philipp Woerner from Bosch Thermotechnik explains the technology behind their adjustable home boiler, which can run on blends and then 100% hydrogen once the supply is available.

We won’t publish a newsletter in August but hope to see many of you tune in on September 2nd for our inaugural TECH Conference European Gas Tech: Delivering on 2050. The conference will look at technologies that offer real and, in many cases, immediate solutions for emissions.

We wish all our readers a safe and restful break this summer and look forward to reconnecting in the Autumn.


Didier Holleaux
Eurogas President

Low hanging fruit in Fit for 55

In July, the European Commission launched the first part of one of the most significant legislative packages impacting the energy sector. It consists of a series of cross-cutting legislative proposals. The second part of the package, which will focus on the gas sector is still being drafted. It is expected before the end of the year.

Rather than providing a high-level overview of the legislative proposal, as there have been many in recent days, let’s dive into one specific element of the package that will certainly attract a lot of attention.

In the revised Energy Efficiency Directive, the European Commission proposes to exclude energy saved from the use of direct fossil fuel combustion, from the energy savings obligation. By applying this as of 2024 the Commission removes the option for Member States to meet increasingly ambitious 2030 climate targets by using low-hanging fruits. It is unfortunate that the Commission has not adopted a more differentiated approach. It has done so for instance in the Energy Taxation Directive or the revised State Aid Guidelines. These clearly differentiate between natural gas and other, more polluting fossil fuels.

The proposal, if adopted in its current undifferentiated form, would make it significantly harder for the EU to meet 2030 targets. First, it would reduce incentives for Member States that rely on coal and oil to take measures to switch away from those fuels. It could therefore significantly prolong the lifetime of those assets, in particular where alternatives are not cost-effective. Second, it remains unclear how policy measures promoting renewable and low-carbon gaseous fuels in combination with direct gas combustion would qualify. Finally, it could also have the unintended consequence of increasing emissions across the energy system. Since the restrictions do not apply to indirect fossil fuel use, which produces a significant additional electricity generation capacity needed to power an electricity-based heating system during cold winter months.

Fortunately, there is also a growing understanding that gas – natural, renewable and low-carbon – will have to be part of the energy transition. We are therefore eagerly looking forward to the remainder of the ‘Fit for 55’ package.

We have high expectations for the ‘hydrogen and decarbonised gas market package’. It should become the key enabler for the transformation and decarbonisation of the gas sector before 2050. As well as countering these shortcomings, it will provide the chance to reduce the sector’s emissions through improved Leak Detection and Repair as well as Monitoring Verification and Reporting. Difficult and complex regulatory and policy choices are still to be made. They should be guided by the experience gained in the past thirty years of building a highly successful and efficient natural gas market.

Andreas Guth
Policy Director

Landwärme: Biomethane, CCS and a circular economy

Landwärme is one of the leading biomethane traders in Germany, and across Europe in fact, with over 3 TWh biomethane in trade volume. We are an independent and owner-managed company with offices in Germany and Hungary.

Since day one, Landwärme has actively shaped the biomethane market and kept that pioneering spirit ever since. Today, more than 70 employees go above and beyond to provide Europe with a clean energy supply. What drives us is the idea of a carbon-zero world sooner rather than later, through socially sustainable and renewable energy sources.

Although the global implications of climate change are becoming all too evident, not all available regenerative energy sources are used to their full potential. The energy transition can only succeed through pooling all efforts and establishing a smart and integrated renewable energy system.

Methane is the backbone of the energy system. It is the perfect complement to hydrogen and electricity as it is storable, can be transported over long-distances and is readily available. It can be used in existing applications, such as combined heat and power generation and in heavy-duty traffic.

Biomethane, however, is not deployed as widely as it could be. It is readily available and can start decarbonising our energy systems today. Biomethane is produced from biogenic materials, renewable raw materials and liquid manure. It can already be used as an alternative to natural gas and is just as flexible as its fossil equivalent. Hundreds of energy providers and public utility companies are already profiting from the sustainable all-rounder supplied by Landwärme. It can be used in power, heating, and transportation systems.

To achieve the goal of net-zero, CO2 has to be extracted from the atmosphere, which means negative emissions will be necessary to meet reductions targets. Biomethane can achieve those negative emissions in a variety of ways.

Firstly, if manure is left on the field, it releases large amounts of methane. The fermentation of manure in the biogas plant captures and uses the methane as an energy source. But more importantly, biomethane has the perfect prerequisites for carbon capture and usage or storage (CCU/CCS), which will be crucial in the future energy system.

Carbon capture is already part of biomethane production as CO2 is separated through processing biogas into biomethane. The CO2 can be used for specific purposes or pressed into designated storage sites such as exhausted gas and oil fields, actively contributing to decarbonising the atmosphere. The potential offered by this third-generation methane can help the EU reach its goals. It perfectly fits into the EU Green Deal and the Fit for 55 package.

Biomethane production is in keeping with circular economy aims and couples the energy sector to agriculture and the waste industries. It enables farmers to become energy market players and sustainably provides jobs in rural areas – today and for generations to come. We believe that the combination of mature technology and innovation will move the global fight against climate change forward and enable a better future.

Zoltan Elek
CEO of Landwärme

Kayrros: A new dawn for climate monitoring

Kayrros is a geospatial analytics company leveraging satellite imagery, proprietary algorithms and other technologies to bring unparalleled transparency to energy and the environment.

Our scientists work in partnership with academic research institutions, such as the Laboratoire des Sciences du Climat et de l’Environnement (LSCE) and France’s Centre National d’Etudes Spatiales (CNES), to build actionable solutions on the foundation of top-tier research.

The result: real-time asset monitoring and measurements for market players to take better informed decisions on a broad range of topics ranging from oil inventories to steel and cement production, greenhouse gas emissions and changes in land use and forestry, to name just a few.

The Kayrros Methane Watch monitoring platform is one of these unique tools. For the first time ever, geospatial technology is being deployed to systematically detect large methane emissions worldwide at a very high temporal resolution, thus facilitating steep reductions in our greenhouse gas footprint. We automatically detect methane plumes around the world, measure their emission rates and identify their sources, helping producers, network operators and consumers to curb their climate footprints. Kayrros also measures aggregate emissions from fossil fuel basins and works backwards to identify their various sources.

Methane Watch can play an important role in advancing the goals of enterprises, industry coalitions and policymakers seeking to reduce their footprint. Its measurements can provide an important contribution to the International Methane Emissions Observatory (IMEO) that is being proposed by the UN Environment Programme and the European Commission. This can go a long way towards letting private sector, national oil and gas companies, and other industries achieve their Net Zero targets.

Kayrros is pleased to align with Eurogas and help the continent’s natural gas industry harness innovative solutions to tackle climate change and navigate the energy transition. Methane Watch detects methane dumps both from the upstream and transition network levels, in addition to calculating the methane intensity over productive basins, facilitating improvements in reporting and mitigation.

As important as its contribution may be, Methane Watch is just one of the tools in Kayrros’ toolbox. The latter also includes carbon and NO2 tracking tools as well as flooding and wildfire monitoring technologies that help companies anticipate and mitigate the impact of natural disasters.

It is becoming increasing clear that geospatial technologies and artificial intelligence are crucial in meeting our climate goals. We are thrilled to be at the forefront of innovation in this emerging field and help industrial actors, both in the energy sector and in other industries, find and deploy cost-effective, practical and impactful solutions to achieve carbon neutrality and a sustainable economy.

Antoine Halff
Co-founder and Chief Analyst at Kayrros

ENZA call for synergy and flexibility

This month the European Commission published its Fit for 55 package. It is key to bridging the ambition gap towards 2030 and reaching climate neutrality by 2050.

As the new Chair of ENZA, I’m excited to lead the alliance in this crucial time for the energy transition. Despite different focus areas, our members are like-minded organisations, who recognise that by working together, we can cut emissions sooner and in a more cost-efficient way. Alone, the task would be nearly impossible.

Our diverse membership covers various sectors of energy vectors, technologies and usage, from power generation and industrial pulp and paper production to buildings.

No one solution will get us to 55% lower emissions by 2030. Our alliance encourages flexibility and synergy in renewable energy planning and access. Customers need to be able to choose solutions that are most suitable for their technology in terms of energy needs and cost-efficiency.

Even within one industry, different sites have different needs and specifications. From Cepi’s perspective, in the pulp and paper sector, mills invest in improving energy efficiency and switching to renewable energy. This includes installing new highly efficient cogeneration units that can run on blends of hydrogen in the future, building solar heat plants and unlocking the potential of producing biogas or wood-based advanced bioethanol onsite. Some other sectors and local communities can make use of waste heat from the mills.

While ENZA welcome the ambition the EU set for achieving carbon reductions, we are concerned about the amount of red tape present in many Member States, when it comes to permitting new technologies and projects for synergies between sectors.

Let’s make sure this new package makes things better, not worse. Combining heat and power production is a highly energy efficient technology and necessary to achieve our decarbonisation goals. Yet, new investments in this solution, which can run on variety of fuels, including renewable ones, might stall due to regulatory uncertainty.

Another way to create as efficient an energy system as possible is to repurpose existing infrastructure and machines. We are committed to these changes. We are asking the Commission and Member States to ensure that our investments will be sustainable in the long term. In that way our companies and products can remain globally competitive.

In ENZA, all members are ready to engage to identify the most comprehensive, impactful, and cost-efficient solutions across all sectors and value chains. By utilising intersectoral synergies, we can cut emissions in a smart and effective way.

Jori Ringman
Chair of ENZA and Director General of Cepi

Gas Tech Talk: Kayrros, Satellites successfully detecting methane emissions

Philipp Woerner of Bosch Thermotechnik on hydrogen ready boilers for EU homes.

Of the 105 million heaters currently installed in buildings across the EU, 70% are connected to gas. Bosch Thermotechnik are set to offer hydrogen ready boilers, which can run on natural gas or natural gas blended with new gases, and eventually switch to 100% hydrogen. This final change can be made by just replacing a few components.

“This is definitely no battle heat pumps against boilers” as Philipp Woerner says. “The hydrogen path that we clearly, proactively support is complimentary to electrification.”

In the context of the Fit for 55 package, it is clear that the legislation must support efficient solutions, which run partly on renewable fuels today or are renewables-ready. Gas solutions offer storage and flexibility to energy systems across Europe. While work is ongoing to decarbonise the gas and electricity sectors, solutions like Bosch’s hydrogen ready boilers can prepare the ground for fully decarbonised home heating.

Events – Coming up

European Gas Tech: Delivering on 2050 | 2 September 2021

The 1st edition of the online Eurogas TECH Conference ‘European Gas Tech: Delivering on 2050’  on 2 September 2021 (14:00-16:20 CET) will address– how innovative renewable and decarbonised gas technologies are contributing to the decarbonisation of Europe, delivering the objectives of carbon neutrality before 2050 and the benefit such technologies bring to the EU in terms of innovation and clean tech industrial leadership.– EU’s leadership in renewable and decarbonised gas technologies can bring benefit to communities through the provision of high quality jobs, while meeting Europe’s energy and climate challenges.
– the experience of the deployment of renewable and decarbonised gas technologies in the EU today and the barriers that should be addressed to increase their deployment in the next decade.

This event will include two panels entitled ‘Gas tech made in Europe’ and ‘Gas tech in action’.  Find more information here and join this event!

SPARK | 14-15 September 2021

Join the SPARK Virtual this September for the most exciting future of energy event. The way we produce and consume energy is changing fast. Governments around the world have pledged to meet emissions targets within the next two decades. This will require mass uptake of renewable energy sources and the decarbonisation of buildings, vehicles, and heavy industry. New business models, technologies, funding mechanisms, and regulatory incentives will be key to achieving a sustainable future.
SPARK will bring you 2 days of virtual panels covering the key themes of the energy transition: Green recovery, COP 26, and energy policy/ Finance and investment | Renewable energy/ Flexible grids/ Digital innovation/ Energy management/ Decarbonising transport/ Nuclear power/ Green gas/ Decarbonising buildings/ Carbon capture, utilisation, and storage
This is the online meeting place for the whole energy community to do business, make new partnerships and create the future. SPARK is energy re-imagined. Download the agenda and see all sessions here.

Eurogas is pleased to be a partner at SPARK.

St. Petersburg International Gas Forum | 5-8 October 2021

The largest event of the gas sector in Russia celebrates its anniversary! SPIGF dates back to 2011. In just 10 years the Forum has become the most reputable discussion venue that keeps developing. Every year, the Forum captures attention of relevant Government officials, as well as members of the business, academic and expert communities. Following the results of the event, there are elaborated specific and comprehensive recommendations for the sustainability and progress of the oil and gas industry in both the short- and long-term perspective.
The 2021 agenda of the Forum will feature 20 business tracks. This time the Forum will cover not only the traditional issues, but also some new essential aspects, including sustainable development of the sector, unconventional gas, the legal aspects of the oil and gas business, logistics and transport and use of helium.
InGAS Stream – Innovations in the Gas Industry, Import Substitution in the Gas Industry, Gas Engine Fuel and ROS-GAS-EXPO, these international exhibitions will join forces to showcase cutting-edge natural gas technologies in the EXPOFORUM pavilions. Exhibitors include Gazprom, UNIPER SE, OMV AG, Comita Group, HMS Group, TMK, Siemens Energy, Almaz-Antey Air and Space Defence Corporation, Gazprom Avtomatizatsiya, Severstal and many others. More information on this event is available here.

Eurogas is pleased to be a partner at the St. Petersburg International Gas Forum.

ees Europe Restart 2021 | 6-8 October 2021

Hydrogen technologies are the missing key to achieving a complete transition from fossil fuels to renewable energy.

ees Europe, the continent’s largest and most international exhibition for batteries and energy storage systems, is therefore dedicating extra attention to the topic. Due to the pandemic, this year ees Europe will take place as a compact version ees Europe Restart 2021 from October 6 to 8, at Messe München in Munich, Germany. Join us and discover the latest products and solutions offered by suppliers in the special exhibition segment devoted to hydrogen, fuel cells and Power-to-Gas. More information is available here.

Eurogas is pleased to be a partner at ees Europe Green Hydrogen Conference. ees Europe is part of the Smarter E Europe.

LNG Bunkering 2021 | 7-8 October 2021

Join the event online on 7-8 October and listen to presentations from Naturgy, Enel, The Liberian Registry, AB Klaipedos Nafta, Shell, Consorzio Italiano Biogas and FUELNG!
This virtual conference will bring together leading Oil and Gas sector, LNG companies, Ship Operators, Ports & Terminals to discuss the future of LNG Bunkering, infrastructure development, bunkering operations optimization & improvement of trade relations. Find more information on this event here.

Eurogas is pleased to be a partner at the LNG Bunkering 2021.

HyVolution 2021 | 27-28 October 2021

Hyvolution: the hydrogen event for energy, industry and mobility, a unique event in France !
The event will take place on October, 27th and 28th, 2021 in Paris Event Center, at the Porte de la Vilette (Paris, France) !
Be present at Europe’s outstanding gathering of people from the hydrogen field !
Hyvolution brings together all the players in the hydrogen market. Manufacturers, service providers, institutions and local authorities will present their solutions to project leaders. All the companies and industrialists offering products, services and applications: production, storage, distribution, valorisation ….
All the solutions for all the decarbonated hydrogen markets. In 2020, 120 exhibitors and brands have gathered for this event. 2 days of conference thanks to our Hyvolution TV : national and european market information through experience debriefs and round tables. 1 real business atmosphere : contacts and relations facilitated by our application : Hyvolution Connect. All decarbonized hydrogen solutions will be on Hyvolution !
More information is available here.

Eurogas is pleased to be a partner at the HyVolution 2021.