Italy focuses on hydrogen and starts testing this energy source. Investments for 530 million euros of the National Recovery and Resilience Plan (NRR) to carry out the experimentation of the use of hydrogen in rail transport, locally and regionally, and in road transport, with particular reference to heavy transport. These are the provisions of the two decrees signed by the Minister of Infrastructure and Sustainable Mobility, Enrico Giovannini, which establish the modalities for the development of the hydrogen supply chain in rail transport and the construction of 40 refueling stations for hydrogen transport vehicles on the network. road in respect of the environment and safety.
In rail transport: resources of 300 million
The resources foreseen for the experimentation of hydrogen for railway transport, equal to 300 million, are destined to transform the regional or local services that are currently carried out with diesel trains or other highly polluting hydrocarbons of fossil origin. Moreover, the switch to hydrogen allows to skip the electrification phase of the lines, with a considerable saving on costs for new infrastructures, also avoiding the suspension of the service. The investment involves the entire supply chain: production of green hydrogen, transport, storage, construction of service stations, purchase of trains.
Resource allocation by March 2023
The ten hydrogen refueling stations must be completed by 30 June 2026 and the allocation of resources for their construction must take place by 31 March 2023. The location of the investments takes into account, as a priority, the areas and needs already identified in the Pnrr and in other measures for the implementation of hydrogen, including the Valcamonica and Salento, the Circumetnea railway and the Adriatic Sangritana railway, the Cosenza-Catanzaro regional railway lines, the railway connection between the city of Alghero and the airport, the Terni-Rieti-L’Aquila-Sulmona section.
Experimentation for road transport
The experimentation of hydrogen for road transport, the subject of the other decree by Minister Giovannini, establishes the methods for implementing the investments, which amount to 230 million. The goal is to develop hydrogen experimentation through the construction of at least 40 refueling stations for light and heavy vehicles by 30 June 2026, providing for the notification of the award of contracts by 31 March 2023. For the location of the refueling stations strategic areas for heavy road transport are considered as priorities, such as areas close to internal terminals, routes most interested in the passage of long-range goods transport vehicles and connections to local public transport systems by means of transport powered by hydrogen.