Wintershall Dea and NWO to produce hydrogen in Wilhelmshaven

Source: press release, 4 August 2022

Wintershall Dea and Nord-West Oelleitung sign MoU for BlueHyNow hydrogen production plant on NWO site
Wintershall Dea and Nord-West Oelleitung sign MoU for BlueHyNow hydrogen production plant on NWO site (photo: Wintershall Dea/Antje Schünemann)

Wintershall Dea and Nord-West Oelleitung (NWO) will collaborate on Wintershall Dea’s BlueHyNow project. A plant for the production of large volumes of hydrogen using Norwegian natural gas is being planned by Wintershall Dea, Europe’s largest independent gas and oil producer. BlueHyNow is part of the EnergyHub currently under construction in Wilhelmshaven. NWO has a partly unused pipeline infrastructure in the region, expertise in raw material transportation and storage, and a site at the deepwater port in Wilhelmshaven. The two companies signed a memorandum of understanding on 2 August and plan to complete a feasibility study by the end of the year. The study will explore the construction of a hydrogen production plant on the NWO site in Wilhelmshaven.

“To ensure that we can guarantee future energy security in Germany and drive forward the energy transition, we need hydrogen from natural gas – as well as hydrogen from renewables,” says Hugo Dijkgraaf, board member and Chief Technology Officer (CTO) at Wintershall Dea: “At the Wilhelmshaven site, NWO and Wintershall Dea complement each other perfectly. Along the value chain, from production of hydrogen to its distribution to consumers, we want to pull together as partners in the future and accelerate the development of the urgently needed hydrogen network.” Only recently, the company announced future investments in the hydrogen sector.

The hydrogen produced can be delivered by pipeline to industrial customers for use as a decarbonised energy source or as a raw material, so reducing their CO2 emissions.

“Together with Wintershall Dea, we are making our contribution to the energy transition, becoming part of the new EnergyHub in Wilhelmshaven and continuing to be a reliable and relevant partner for supply security,” adds Dr Jörg Niegsch, Managing Director of NWO.

Hydrogen is seen as a crucial component for a climate-neutral energy supply. But Germany faces a significant capacity gap. According to current forecasts, hydrogen demand will rise from 55 TWh/year today to 90-110 TWh/year as early as 2030. The current plans in the German government’s coalition agreement focus on hydrogen based on electricity from renewable energies and will only add around 28 TWh/year. This is where Wintershall Dea comes in. The company wants to support the development of the hydrogen market with BlueHyNow and its capacity of 5.6 TWh/year. The CO2generated during production will be captured and then shipped to Norway and Denmark for safe and permanent storage in deep geological rock layers under the seabed.