Renewable gas (such as green gas and hydrogen) used in existing gas infrastructure could play an important role in reducing Europe’s greenhouse gas emissions to net-zero by mid-century, according to a study published today by the Gas for Climate initiative. Such a reduction is needed to comply with the Paris Agreement to keep global warming well below 2°C, avoiding dangerous levels of climate change.
The Gas for Climate group consists of seven leading European gas transport companies (Enagás, Fluxys, Gasunie, GRTgaz, Open Grid Europe, Snam and TIGF) and two renewable gas industry associations (European Biogas Association and Consorzio Italiano Biogas). The group commissioned energy and climate consultancy Ecofys to prepare a study into the future role of gas in a net-zero emissions energy system.
Their study shows that it is possible to scale up renewable gas production to more than 120 billion cubic metres annually, including both renewable hydrogen and biomethane. Using this renewable gas in existing gas infrastructure for the heating of buildings, to produce dispatchable electricity as a complement to wind and solar, and to fuel heavy transport, could save about €140 billion annually by 2050 compared to a future energy system without any gas.