At the beginning of November, the international project CarbonNeutralLNG was launched in Nuremberg, Germany, with the participation of Lithuania’s Klaipėdos Nafta (KN), the operator of oil and liquefied natural gas (LNG) terminals. The three-year project will aim for its participants to collaborate on the development of a hybrid process chain involving the production of hydrogen from biomass and its conversion to synthetic methane using a variety of chemical and biological processes.
The project, part of Horizon Europe, the EU’s largest research and innovation programme, will bring together 12 partners, including universities in Germany, Austria, Greece, the Baltic Energy Innovation Centre in Sweden and several business organisations.
Jurgita Šilinskaitė-Venslovienė, Head of LNG Commerce at KN, pointed out that hydrogen will become an integral part of the future energy mix and that we need to start preparing for it today.
“By taking part in this project, we will gain a lot of useful experience in working with the new generation of gas mixtures, and we will be exposed to the development of the very latest technologies, she said. “This is an important opportunity for us to develop and expand our competencies in the application of hydrogen technologies, the transportation and geological storage of CO2 in Europe and the production of synthetic methane. During the course of this project, research in the laboratories should be applied to carry out small demonstration projects, where their economic usefulness is also assessed.”
According to her, participation in this project is also relevant for KN because of the LNG infrastructure it manages, which can be adapted to the transportation of methane gas produced from renewable sources in the future without additional investments.
In addition to research, the project will also carry out impact assessments at the environmental, social and economic levels, and will monitor and look for ways to avoid fugitive methane emissions in the natural gas sector. It is planned to measure methane emissions at the KN LNG terminal infrastructure using drones.
Hydrogen technology is one of the most realistic alternatives to fossil fuels in order to meet national and European Union energy and climate goals. Therefore, both Lithuania and other countries are focusing on research and demonstration projects on hydrogen production, transportation and related activities to prepare for the transition to hydrogen technology, which will directly contribute to the decarbonisation of industry, energy and transport sectors.
KN participates in a working group on the draft Guidelines for the Development of the Hydrogen Sector in Lithuania and the Action Plan for Their Implementation, which is currently being prepared.