First ‘Hydrogen Valley’ in Italy is underway, will boost green mobility
FNM, A2A and Snam have signed a memorandum of understanding to provide a further boost to the development of green hydrogen mobility in Lombardy. The agreement, signed by the Chairman of FNM Andrea Gibelli, the CEO of A2A Renato Mazzoncini and the CEO of Snam Marco Alverà, is aimed at examining a system for supplying and refueling hydrogen from renewable sources and the recovery of material to power the new trains of the Brescia-Iseo-Edolo line announced by FNM and Trenord in November.
The plan, called H2iseO, will make it possible to create the first Italian “Hydrogen Valley” in Lombardy, particularly in Sebino and Valcamonica, equipping it with a fleet of hydrogen trains and related infrastructure, starting from 2023. FNM, A2A and Snam will collaborate in the creation of a production and refueling system for the new trains, which will be purchased by FNM and entrusted to Trenord and which will replace the current diesel-powered trains on the railway line managed by FERROVIENORD (a 100% FNM company).
Subsequently, by 2025, the hydrogen solution will also be extended to local public transport, which counts about 40 vehicles managed in Valcamonica by FNMAutoservizi (a 100% FNM company), with the possibility of also opening up to freight logistics.
The conversion of the railway section to hydrogen represents a first step towards the decarbonization of the entire local public transport system in the valley, offering opportunities also for private mobility, thanks to the versatility of the filling stations.
“The initiative for the creation of Italy’s first Hydrogen Valley, promoted by FNM in collaboration with Trenord, looks to the future and is part of a wider plan that aims to create mobility services developed according to environmental, economic and social sustainability. The widespread presence of power plants that produce energy from renewable sources such as hydroelectric, is one of the peculiarities that makes Valle Camonica particularly suitable for the development of the H2iseO project, which has a strong component of innovation and which has the ambition to become a model to be replicated in other areas of the country. The first hydrogen trains that will circulate on the Brescia-Iseo-Edolo will derive the energy necessary to move from the territory, in a logic of supply chain and circular economy, and with zero environmental impact. This will create the first example of the total decarbonization of local public transport,” said Andrea Gibelli, Chairman of FNM.
Renato Mazzoncini, CEO of A2A, commented: “Innovation and sustainability are the two keywords of this initiative and represent the values at the base of this important collaboration. Hydrogen will certainly play a fundamental role in promoting the energy transition to contribute to achieving the European target of zero CO2 emissions by 2050. The multi-business nature of our Group puts us in the position of being able to provide various solutions for the production of green hydrogen in the area related to the project, from hydroelectric plants to our assets related to the circular economy. This agreement is a further step in the path undertaken by A2A to develop the potential of this important resource”.
Snam CEO, Marco Alverà, added: “With this agreement, we strengthen our commitment to invest in the decarbonization of the Italian rail transport through hydrogen. Trains represent the first application in which green hydrogen will become competitive. For this reason, in addition to preparing our network to transport growing quantities of hydrogen, in Snam’s 2020-2024 plan we have foreseen investments of approximately 150 million euros for the development of refueling systems dedicated to sustainable railway mobility, which will allow to convert the numerous sections of the Italian network which are not electrified. The trains will be one of the first steps in the creation of a national hydrogen value chain, which will also provide new opportunities for development and employment”.