Canada and Germany bolster hydrogen alliance with first-of-its-kind bilateral program

Building on the commitment to implement a transatlantic hydrogen corridor, the governments of Canada and Germany have signed a memorandum of understanding to speed up commercial-scale hydrogen trade between the two countries in a first-of-its-kind bilateral program.

Natural Resources Canada

The MoU, signed on March 18 by Jonathan Wilkinson, Canadian Minister of Energy and Natural Resources, and Robert Habeck, German Vice-Chancellor and Minister of Economic Affairs and Climate Action, seeks to establish the bilateral program to support hydrogen trade and secure early access for clean hydrogen producers in the German market.

Furthermore, the agreement aims to bolster the two countries’ efforts to fight climate change and enhance energy security.

Under the MoU, Canada and Germany will work to establish a dedicated bilateral window through Germany’s H2Global Foundation that will support commercial transactions between Canada’s hydrogen producers and Germany’s industrial manufacturing and energy distribution sectors.

The Canada-Germany Bilateral Window will be administered by the H2Global Foundation and will conduct coordinated supply and demand side auctions that will connect Canadian hydrogen exporters with German buyers to facilitate the completion of commercially binding contracts for the sale of clean Canadian hydrogen and its derivatives within the established timelines.

The agreement delivers on the commitments made under the Canada-Germany Hydrogen Alliance signed in Stephenville, Newfoundland and Labrador, in August 2022.

“Canada and Germany have a long-standing friendship and determination to work together to address climate change, accelerate the global energy transition and strengthen international energy security. Canada has over 100 years of experience in hydrogen innovation and is a global leader in hydrogen fuel cell technology and renewable energy. Today’s announcement is a testament to Canada’s position as a global supplier of choice for clean energy and will enable the creation of sustainable jobs, clean economic growth, emission reductions and energy security at home and abroad,” said Minister Wilkinson.

Vice-Chancellor Habeck commented: “We welcome the progress made in Canada in the development of several renewable hydrogen and ammonia projects. Although some challenges remain, we believe that a joint H2 Global Financing Window can play an important role in closing the remaining price gap. This will support the development of H2 production capacity with the aim of increasing the availability of hydrogen.”

Ports and industry players to collaborate on Canada-Germany hydrogen corridor

Following the MoU between German and Canadian governments, a number of industry players and ports also signed agreements to support the commercial trade of hydrogen between the two countries.

Namely, Canada’s Port of Argentia and Germany’s Hamburg Port Authority signed a Letter of Intent (LoI) to collaborate on the export and import of green hydrogen from Canada to Germany.

Jens Meier, CEO at Hamburg Port Authority, said: “The ports of Argentia and Hamburg concur that a maritime supply chain for green hydrogen and its derivates is urgently needed. Such novel supply chains need close cooperation and collaboration among exporting and importing ports. As future production and consumption locations, both Ports have unique offerings to share in a manner that can be mutually beneficial.”

Port of Argentia is a partner with Pattern Energy in the establishment of Argentia Renewables, a 300 MW wind energy to green hydrogen production project at Argentia.

Pattern Energy, together with Germany’s company Mabanaft, is a signatory of another LoI that seeks to underpin the German-Hydrogen Alliance program.

The two companies intend to consider a potential transaction for the supply of green ammonia to Mabanaft. The green ammonia would be produced by Pattern Energy at the Port of Argentia, in the Canadian province of Newfoundland and Labrador, starting in 2027.

As part of the LoI, Mabanaft also plans to evaluate the opportunity to potentially become a co-investor next to Pattern Energy and share ammonia and infrastructure expertise.

The so-called New Energy Gate in Hamburg is also set to play a key role in Mabanaft’s planned imports of green ammonia. The planned New Energy Gate Hamburg is to become Mabanaft’s first major hub for the import, storage, and processing of fuels from renewable energy sources.

In November 2022, Mabanaft announced plans to build up an import terminal for green energy in the Port of Hamburg, with the U.S. company Air Products as an anchor customer.