Feasibility study on pilot hydrogen project for the Chiren UGS is eligible for funding

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The US Trade and Development Agency (USTDA) initiated a funding application process for the feasibility study of the pilot hydrogen project for the Chiren underground gas storage facility, in Bulgaria. The news was confirmed by Carl Kress, USTDA Regional Director for Middle East, North Africa, Europe and Eurasia.

“As a responsible gas transmission operator, Bulgartransgaz is already working on the further development of the hydrogen transmission infrastructure to neighbouring countries, as well as on retrofitting the existing gas transmission system to work with hydrogen-gas mixtures,” said Vladimir Malinov, Bulgartransgaz Executive Director. “The implementation of this first-of-its-kind project in Bulgaria for green hydrogen production and use for technological needs at Chiren UGS facilities will reduce greenhouse gas emissions and contribute to achieving the decarbonisation targets.”

Indeed, a Memorandum of Understanding on the project was signed in September 2023 in the USA between Bulgartransgaz EAD, Glavbolgarstroy Holding AD, the US companies Solar Turbines Inc. and Honeywell and the Italian company Pietro Fiorentini. The first step is a feasibility study that will determine the technical configuration and structure of the public-private partnership for its implementation. The green hydrogen produced is to be used as fuel on site.

Mr Malinov also recalled the Hydrogen Transmission Infrastructure in Bulgaria, a project developed by Bulgartransgaz and included in the European Commission’s list of projects of common interest to the EU in November 2023. The planned infrastructure consists of a new pipeline with a length of approximately 250 kilometres and two compressor stations in the area of ​​Dupnitsa and Kulata. It will allow bi-directional transmission of both domestically produced hydrogen and hydrogen from Greece.

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