Portugal’s Floene promotes pioneering roadmap for renewable gases in the industrial sector

Eurogas member Floene is the largest gas distribution network operator in Portugal, and at the forefront of the energy transition in the country. With more than 13,500 km of gas network, Floene is a committed force in developing initiatives that contribute to decarbonising the Portuguese economy. Floene’s network- built mostly with polyethylene, and with an average age of less than 16 years – is notably suited for the distribution of renewable gases such as hydrogen and biomethane; gases that are key vectors for decarbonisation and efficiency in energy-intensive processes and hard-to-abate sectors. This means that Floene is ideally placed to promote a pioneering new project in Portugal: The Roadmap for the Introduction of Renewable Gases in the National Industrial Sector.

Tailored to the industrial sector’s needs, with an eye on hydrogen

The roadmap is intended to build momentum for renewable gases in the sector, with special emphasis on hydrogen. The project itself is funded under Portugal’s Consumption Efficiency Promotion Plan (the PPEC) and approved by the Energy National Regulation Authority (ERSE). It will demonstrate the relevance of gases in decarbonising hard-to-abate industrial processes. The Roadmap also promotes an increase in energy efficiency through the use of more efficient equipment and adapting consumption. The project will identify the sector's needs, providing technical/scientific content and training activities to simplify the transition to more sustainable and efficient solutions. Floene is especially well placed for the company’s know-how – Floene manages nine of the eleven DSOs in Portugal – to support the industrial sector in this process.

An opening conference to set the tone

The project partnership is comprised of industry associations, academia, energy sector associations, and innovation and research centres among others. Over the next 24 months the partners will share technological knowledge about the incorporation of renewable gases in the industrial sector. There will also be myriad activities including conferences, workshops, advanced training courses, surveys and energy diagnostics (and also an online platform that includes a simulation/ auto-diagnostic tool). The first such initiative came on 12 December 2022; the opening conference, featuring an intervention from Floene chairman Diogo da Silveira, and Portuguese Secretary of State for Environment and Energy, João Galamba. Well received by the 275 participants who joined in person and online, the conference also comprised a special round table event with four industrial associations discussing the opportunities and challenges of decarbonisation in the industrial sector.

So what’s next? The Roadmap will see more initiatives take place during the first semester of 2023, focused on a series of six cross-country and cross-sector workshops – reaching different places, different industries and different communities. The objective? Building synergies at local and regional levels, and continuing to promote the impact of renewable gases in the decarbonisation and development of the Portuguese economy.