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Estonian public and private organisations establish ‘Hydrogen Valley Estonia’

Alexela, Eesti Energia, the Port of Tallinn, the University of Tartu and the Estonian Hydrogen Association have signed an agreement to establish Hydrogen Valley Estonia to accelerate the vigorous and versatile development of the hydrogen industry and to officially establish the world’s first nationwide Hydrogen Valley.

Boosting development in the field of green hydrogen based on renewable energy is set to play a key role in implementing green transformation and achieving Estonia’s national climate goals. The European Union and Estonia’s ambitious goal of achieving carbon neutrality by 2050 has brought about the need to significantly accelerate the development and implementation of green technologies. In the upcoming decades, hydrogen will be one of the most important keywords, contributing to the green transformation as a means for storage and as an energy carrier, as examples.

According to Marek Alliksoo, head of international projects at the Estonian Hydrogen Association coordinating the Hydrogen Valley, Hydrogen Valleys mostly include a single city or region, but Hydrogen Valley Estonia will be developing the world’s first nationwide Hydrogen Valley.

“Silicon Valley in the United States is a global centre for cutting-edge technology and innovation, whereas Hydrogen Valley Estonia will aim to develop a centre for hydrogen economy technology and innovation in our region,” Mr Alliksoo said. “The agreement we have signed today will transform an enthusiasm-based initiative into a formal association that will allow us to move forward with cooperation on hydrogen, and build the hydrogen economy faster, smoother and more efficiently, in order to contribute to the implementation of the green transformation.”

Hydrogen Valley Estonia is a consortium of Estonian public and private capital-based organisations and research institutions aimed at making the local energy system, based primarily on fossil fuels, more sustainable. This fits in with Estonia’s ambitious goal of using only 100 per cent renewable energy by 2030 at the latest. In 2022, Hydrogen Valley Estonia formulated a plan to develop the world’s first national hydrogen ecosystem and the first production units, distribution solutions and applications will be created within the next six years. This hydrogen ecosystem will create new jobs and contribute to economic growth throughout Estonia.

“We are working towards launching a pilot project in the coming years, in which Eesti Energia would participate as a producer of green hydrogen in the hydrogen value chain. The Estonian Hydrogen Valley is an ambitious project with great potential that allows for the acceleration of the development of the hydrogen economy,” said Raine Pajo, a member of the board of Eesti Energia.

“By producing hydrogen from renewable energy sources on an industrial level, we can solve several important problems. We have the opportunity to store weather-dependent renewable energy, support significant reduction of emissions in the fossil fuel-powered and polluting transport sector, decarbonise industry and create novel future technology-based competence in Estonia,” he added.

The Hydrogen Valley Estonia Support Group already includes more than 30 local and international institutions. The strategy and work plan for the Hydrogen Valley will be open to the public, to support the creation of synergies between the parties involved. All of this supports the creation of suitable conditions in Estonia as a test environment, where the introduction of green hydrogen procedures can be accelerated, to play an important role in combining economic growth and climate objectives.

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