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Power-to-Gas technology for the integration of Hungary’s electricity and natural gas sectors

Not long-ago Power-to-Gas (P2G) technology was only mentioned in connection with research, development and innovation, but now it has become a reality in Hungary: it can be used in seasonal energy storage to reduce dependence on natural gas exports or to integrate the electricity and gas sectors.

With the help of the P2G technology, electricity is converted in several steps into gaseous fuels, mostly using electrolysis and chemical, biological processes. It is simpler and more economical to store this gas, which is most often hydrogen or methane, than storing electricity.

“Today’s linear energy economy will be replaced in a few years by a circular model that will allow the optimisation of the energy sector as a whole by interconnecting sectors,” said Balázs Sándor, Head of the Natural Gas Supervision and Price Regulation Department of the Hungarian Energy and Public Utility Regulatory Authority (MEKH) at last year’s conference of the Hungarian Academy of Sciences (MTA) about the regulatory issues of converting electricity into gas.

Mr Sándor presented the current regulatory environment and highlighted the new developments that will shape the energy sector in the future to achieve decarbonisation.

“One important tool for the integration of the electricity and gas sectors is P2G technology, which provides a solution for energy conversion,” he added.

The Head of the Department also spoke about the storage of renewable energies in gas storage facilities, the creation of interoperability between the electricity and natural gas markets and natural gas market services covered by electricity generation.

Mr Sándor highlighted that for the development of technology it is essential to create long-term sustainable regulation, for which several strategic questions still need to be answered.

MEKH sets a high value on P2G technology in Hungary, that is why to promote developments, the Authority is paying special attention to the development of the regulatory environment and continuously monitors the technological development of the industry.

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