27 Sep 2020

Czech Republic: ORLEN Group Gets Set For First H2 Station

27 Sep 2020  by PWKD   

The ORLEN Group, targeting the development of environmentally friendly hydrogen technology, will later this year, begin the construction of hydrogen refueling stations at two Czech Benzina stations - in Prague and Litvinov, which drivers will be able to use next year.

Plans are also in place to open more hydrogen stations - in Brno, Plzeň and Prague, on the D10 motorway, which are consistent with the emission neutrality in 2050 announced by the company.

“The energy transformation is a necessity, and we want to be its leader in Poland and Central Europe,” said Daniel Obajtek, President of the Management Board of PKN ORLEN. “We intend to use the challenges related to it, including the global trend of new mobility, also for business purposes. In the following years, we will invest over PLN 25 billion in projects that will enable the reduction of environmental impact and openness to new business models. We have a concrete action plan. We will include develop alternative fuels and low carbon technologies. Undoubtedly, in the future, hydrogen will be an important fuel used in transport, therefore we are determined to intensify work in this area, also at our foreign stations”.

Safe and environmentally friendly, hydrogen is obtained, among others from natural gas and renewable energy sources, but it can also be obtained from biomass. It can be used, after cleaning as a fuel in electric vehicles, constituting an alternative to traditional fossil fuels in the near future.

Tomasz Wiatrak, President of the Management Board of UNIPETROL, a Czech company from the ORLEN Group, said that hydrogen-powered vehicles are the future of the automotive industry, among others due to the short refueling time or the technically simple method of storing and transporting hydrogen. He added, “We are in advanced talks with the authorities of Prague, Central Bohemia and Ustka voivodeships on its use in public transport in the Czech Republic. We are also in constant contact with manufacturers of hydrogen-powered cars, which in the future may result in cooperation and interesting projects.”

At the Benzina-Grupa ORLEN fuel service stations in Prague (in the Barrandov district) and in Litvínov, the first hydrogen refueling points will be built, which will be supplied with hydrogen produced during the processing of crude oil in the UNIPETROL refineries in Litvínov and Kralupy on the Vltava River. Bonett Group - the largest supplier of alternative fuel stations in Central Europe and the second largest CNG seller in the Czech Republic will carry out the construction of the refueling station, commissioned by UNIPETROL. The Group operates on the Czech, Polish and Slovak markets, focusing on investments, running and deliveries of alternative fuel stations.

ORLEN Group’s construction of hydrogen stations in the Czech Republic works towards the development of alternative fuels. Since December 2019, PKN ORLEN and Pesa Bydgoszcz have been implementing a project aimed at developing a hydrogen-powered rail vehicle.

The process of selecting a contractor for the hydrogen hub in Włocławek has also been initiated which will ultimately be able to produce up to 600 kg of refined hydrogen per hour. An installation will be built to produce hydrogen foe transport fuel, logistic infrastructure and refueling stations, as part of the investment. At the first stage of distribution, fuel will be used primarily for public and freight transport, with the option of refueling passenger cars.

Hydrogen technologies is also being developed at the ORLEN Południe bio-refinery in Trzebinia, and following the plan, production of hydrogen as transport fuel is expected to start in 2021.

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