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Hydrogen: by 2026 there will be 36 new filling stations in Italy

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Major step forward for the diffusion of hydrogen as a fuel: The Ministry of Infrastructure and Transport has recently published the ranking of the 36 projects admitted to the public funding for the construction of new filling stations, with a contribution from the State of approximately 103.5 million euros. This is only part of a total of €230 million financed through the PNRR and earmarked for the development of the national hydrogen refueling network in 2026.

Currently only two active stations

The new hydrogen filling stations, if all projects were approved, would drastically change the situation with regard to territorial coverage, if we think that currently only two are active, one in Bolzano and one in Mestre. The most important criterion (which will also determine the priority in the issuance of funds) is to intercept the most important directives of the heavy commercial trafficTherefore, areas such as the Brenner axis, the east-west corridor from Turin to Trieste and areas belonging to the European TEN-T corridors (the trans-European transport networks) will be preferred, as far as Apulia and Calabria. Gas stations are also planned near Italy’s “hydrogen valleys”.or areas where you want to experiment with hydrogen rail transport: there are currently three projects under development: one in Valcamonica, one in Umbria and one in Sicily.

Most investments in the North

Southern Italy will play an important role, such as 40% of the total funds, according to PNRR, will necessarily be allocated to projects involving the regions of southern Italyonly of the 36 approved proposals for the time being, the lion’s share will still go to the North, which receives 77% of the current funding. In detail, about 27 million will be invested in Veneto, with 9 projects, followed by Trentino-Alto Adige (21 million for 6 filling stations) and Piemonte and Lombardy, with 5 and 4 projects respectively. The other regions involved in this round are Puglia, where 8 million will be invested to build 3 petrol stations, while there are 2 projects for Lazio and one for Calabria.

We need “green” hydrogen

An important aspect of the new hydrogen filling stations (intended for both passenger cars and heavy and light commercial vehicles) is that the loans are provided on the condition that only green hydrogen is supplied for the entire duration of the concession, or produced by electrolysis using electricity from renewable sources. « The development of a network of filling stations is essential to give hydrogen a chance decisive contribution to achieving the decarbonisation targets of the Italian system”, declared Alberto Dossi, President of H2IT, the Italian Hydrogen Association, not to mention the potential associated with the development of a supply chain that is of great importance in the economics of the ecological transition and the opportunity to create new jobs.

At the moment only two hydrogen cars in Italy

If the network expansion project is very ambitious, that should at least be said in terms of private transport, there are currently only two hydrogen cars for sale in Italy: Toyota Mirai and Hyundai Nexo. Both are based on fuel cell technology, ie batteries in which a reaction takes place between hydrogen and oxygen to generate electricity. The Mirai can fill up in just 5 minutes and has a range of 650 km and starts at 66,000 euros, while the Nexo has a range of 666 kilometers and prices range from 77,900 to 80,900 euros.

Source: Corriere

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