Hive Energy [Hive], is a leading renewable energy developer founded in the UK. The company has announced plans to develop Europe’s largest green hydrogen hub in Albacete, named as HIVE H2 ALBAMED.
ABOUT THE GREEN HYDROGEN HUB
The first hydrogen and ammonia hub in Albacete, the southeast of Spain, consists of up to 9GW of solar and wind energy and 4GW of electrolysis capacity by 2030. The total investment is estimated to be over €10 billion to produce over 1 million tonnes of green hydrogen and green ammonia by 2030.
The project name is to reflect Hive’s ambition for green hydrogen development. “Alba”, in addition to referencing Albacete city, is a synonym for “amanecer” as well as “blanco” in Spanish, which means “dawn” and “white” respectively in English – the beginning and cleaning. It is the perfect allegory of the beginning of an era towards a new and clean energy. “Med” references the close connection with the “Mediterranean corridor”. Hive expects that the Hub will become a major contributor supporting the decarbonization of strategic industries and ports in the region.
Hive’s green hydrogen ambition
Hive Energy has adopted a hub type model, which aims to work with strategic and offtake partners along the value chain, to develop large scale green hydrogen and ammonia production that is accessible, safe, and highly competitive, with focus on both national and European markets. Hive’s goal is to support the clean energy transition for hard-to-abate industries across the Mediterranean corridor and in the production of synthetic fuels that will power air, maritime, and road transport. Hydrogen will be key in the production of e-methanol and ammonia, which will secure the availability of e-fuels with carbon neutral emissions in the Mediterranean ports, positioning them as a reference in international corridors of green hydrogen.
The future of the project
The Hub will be delivered over four phases. The first phase is expected to achieve the final investment decision (FID) in early 2025 and full operation in the second half of 2027 – including up to 800MW electrolysis combined with 1.1GW Solar PV, 284MW onshore wind and energy storage system. Hive started the permitting of the first phase in January 2023 and at the same time has presented the project to the Regional Government of Castilla La Mancha to be declared as Priority Project.
The first two phases of the Hub are located in the industrial area of Camporroso, next to ECOPORT, ‘Puerto Seco’ and ‘Plataforma Logística Intermodal de Albacete’, providing this future logistic hub direct access to the cost competitive green hydrogen. Emiliano García-Page, President of Castilla La Mancha, together with Aurelio Martínez, President of the port Authority of Valencia, has signed the protocol for the development of the logistic platform of Albacete consolidating the ECOPORT alliance with the Port of Valencia.
Hive aspires to become a leading green hydrogen developer and producer supporting the energy transition and sustainable mobility in Spain. HIVE H2 ALBAMED accounts for nearly 100% of Spain’s current planned green hydrogen production by 2030. It will become a key milestone in the green hydrogen journey, strengthening Spanish leadership in the energy transition and the country’s objective of becoming an energy exporter through the first European green hydrogen corridor H2Med.
The project has secured over 20,000 hectares to the date, covering municipalities of Villarobledo, Minaya, La Roda, Barrax, Lezuza, La Herrera, Balazote, Pozuelo, Albacete, Pozo Cañada, Chinchilla de Monte Aragón, Casas de Juan Nuñez, Pozo Lorente, Valdeganga, Villalgordo del Júcar, Tarazona de la Mancha and Almansa, in the Albacete province and Casas de los Pinos, Casas de Haro, Casas de Fernando Alonso, Pozoamargo, Casas de Benítez and Sisante in the Cuenca province. Hive has been working closely with all these city councils to study the environmental, social, and economic measures specific to each municipality, aiming to minimize the impact of the project on the ecological, tourist, ethnographic, recreational, and social development in the region.
Comments on the Hive H2 Albamed project
The Sustainable Development Officer of the Regional Government of Castilla-La Mancha, José Luis Escudero, has indicated that: “Albacete has the leadership and strength to be at the forefront in the generation and export of green hydrogen, therefore, the objective of this public-private collaboration is to work together to declare HIVE H2 ALBAMED as Priority Project, which would give us a competitive advantage over other regions.”
Hive has requested the Project Priority Status and the Regional Government is working in accordance with the regulations to be able to provide the project with a preferential permitting framework and administrative simplification. A support team is offered from the Regional Administration with the aim of attracting initiatives of great socio economic interest in sectors considered strategic for Castilla La Mancha.
“It is a project of great interest for the region where we have set ourselves the key objective of advancing in our commitment to green hydrogen with the involvement of all interested agents. We want to make Albacete a powerful hub in terms of renewable hydrogen and make the transport and storage network in Spain possible”. Continues José Luis Escudero.
“HIVE H2 ALBAMED will boost the economic activities of local SMEs and local employment opportunities. It will act as a driving force to attract new industry and investment from other sections of the hydrogen value chain, such as electrolyser factories, green fertilizer plants or hydrogen transport and storage technology”, adds Francisco Javier Rosell Pérez, General Director of Companies, Economy and Employment of the Regional Government of Castilla La Mancha.
Giles Redpath, CEO of Hive Energy, has commented: “We are excited to announce the ALBAMED H2 Hub that we began developing in 2020. The objective of HIVE H2 ALBAMED is to contribute to the deployment of the hydrogen economy in Castilla La Mancha. It will not only allow us to lead the deployment of the renewable hydrogen value chain in the southern Europe but will also create huge employment opportunities in the region. We expect the Hub will create more than 12,000 jobs over the next decade. Our objective is to generate sustainable value in the form of environmental, social, and economic benefits. Developing a pioneering project of public-private, inter-territorial and multi-sector cooperation will enable us to realise broader value creation and synergies among stakeholders.”
Luis Martínez Hermida, General Director of Hive Energy in Spain, highlighted: “HIVE H2 ALBAMED is a project that, with 4 GW of electrolysis capacity, doubles the planned green hydrogen production in Europe to date. This large-scale production will be a necessary contribution to the energy transition and security of supply, producing sustainable energy in Spain and for Europe.”
Shirvine Zhang, Global Director of Green Hydrogen at Hive Energy added: “HIVE H2 ALBAMED will further advance Hive Energy’s position as a leading green hydrogen developer and producer globally. Hive continues with its strategy to contribute to the development of the green hydrogen economy and other hydrogen-based products, including green ammonia and e-methanol. The project is strategically aligned with European Commission’s REPowerEU Plan, the Castilla La Mancha and the Valencian Green Hydrogen Strategy and the European backbone programme. It is fully complied with the Renewable Energy Directive II (REDII) and will become a major contributor to the Sustainable Development Goals of the 2030 Agenda.”