Air Liquide is expanding its presence in the clean energy sector after acquiring a UK-based natural gas infrastructure development firm and securing its place in a UK Government scheme worth £20m ($25m).
Air Liquide has completed the takeover of ENN Clean Energy UK, a subsidiary of China’s largest privately-owned energy company ENN Group. Financial details were not disclosed.
Under the deal, the Tier One player has added ENN Clean Energy’s natural gas stations in Wellington, Portbury and Huntingdon to its European network of over 60 bio-NGV (natural gas for vehicles) stations.
The sites will predominantly be supplied by Air Liquide’s biogas purification units in the UK, France and Sweden. Through these units, the industrial gas giant is already present in the field of biomethane production for gas grids, with this latest acquisition reinforcing its foothold in the industry.
A media release explained, “This acquisition marks an additional step in Air Liquide’s development of transportation solutions that reduce carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions from well-to-wheel in the UK.”
In addition, a project led by Air Liquide has been selected to be part of a UK Government programme worth £20m ($25m) to help the European country meet its CO2 reduction targets.
Under the scheme, which starts in April 2017, the France-based corporation will trial a fleet of 86 gas-powered trucks.
Five trucks fitted with cryogenic refrigerating units for cold storage truck transport using Air Liquide’s liquid nitrogen (N2) solutions blueezeTM instead of diesel will also be tested in the pilot project.
By Rhea Healy
France has launched an offshore green hydrogen production platform at the country’s Port of Saint-Nazaire this week, along with its first offshore wind farm. The hydrogen plant, which its operators say is the world’s first facility of its type, coincides with the launch of another “first of its kind” facility in Sweden dedicated to storing hydrogen in an underground lined rock cavern (LRC).
The project sets up the Hydrogen Valley in Rome, the first industrial-scale technological hub for the development of the national supply chain for the production, transport, storage and use of hydrogen for the decarbonization of industrial processes and for sustainable mobility.
At first glance, hydrogen seems to be the perfect solution to our energy needs. It doesn’t produce any carbon dioxide when used. It can store energy for long periods of time. It doesn’t leave behind hazardous waste materials, like nuclear does. And it doesn’t require large swathes of land to be flooded, like hydroelectricity. Seems too good to be true. So…what’s the catch?