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Major milestone: green hydrogen plant prepares for start of construction

The construction phase of one of the first green hydrogen plants is in full preparation, which brings us one step closer to our goals of being carbon neutral by 2050. The energy company VoltH2 and the engineering and architecture consultancy Sweco will work intensively together for this purpose. The production plant will be built in Delfzijl, Netherlands. It is expected to produce around 5,000 tonnes of green hydrogen from the second half of 2027 and is currently being designed.

Belangrijke mijlpaal: groene waterstoffabriek bereidt zich voor op bouwstart

© Sweco / VoltH2

With the contours of its climate strategy now in place, the European Union must focus on effective implementation. According to the European climate service Copernicus, last May was the hottest May on record globally. There is no time to lose. Green hydrogen remains crucial for decarbonising energy-intensive sectors such as the chemical industry. It will become a key energy source where truly high temperatures are needed, such as in the production of steel and cement.

The time is now

VoltH2 is making rapid progress with the development of three green hydrogen plants, two of which are near the Belgian border (Vlissingen and Terneuzen) and one in Delfzijl, along with three more in Germany (Wilhelmshaven, Essen, and Gelsenkirchen). Following previous approvals, the energy company was awarded a building and environmental permit, as well as a substantial subsidy for the Delfzijl plant over the past six months, thanks in part to Belgian expertise.

A specialised hydrogen team with top experts from Sweco will also handle the basic engineering for the hydrogen plant in the coming months. This collaboration marks a milestone in developing one of the first hydrogen production plants to be operational in the Low Countries.

Belangrijke mijlpaal: groene waterstoffabriek bereidt zich voor op bouwstart

André Jurres signs the contract as CEO of VoltH2. From left to right: Filip Verheyen (Division Director Industry Sweco Belgium), André Jurres, Åsa Bergman (President & CEO Sweco), Tom Van Den Noortgaete (Division Director Energy & Environment Sweco Belgium), Erwin Malcorps (Business Area President Sweco Belgium), Gerwin Hament (Director Operations VoltH2), Peter De Block (Director Construction VoltH2)

André Jurres, CEO of VoltH2: “Sweco and VoltH2 have made a conscious decision to act now, with plans for several relatively small capacity plants to make green hydrogen available to our industry and ports in the short term. This contrasts with large plants of around 100 MW or more that will only be ready at a later stage. In Delfzijl, we are planning a 60 MW hydrogen plant in the second half of 2027, which corresponds to a production of around 5,000 tonnes per year.”

Erwin Malcorps, Business Area President of Sweco Belgium, adds: “At Sweco, we made a conscious decision to take on a pioneering role. As the leading architecture and engineering firm in Europe, we are committed to this. If we want to make progress in the energy transition, we must act quickly. By stepping into a project from the investment and permitting stage, we can also immediately deliver a detailed preliminary design. Since the permit was granted, we have continued with the basic engineering. We remain available to provide VoltH2 with technical advice during the construction of the plant.”

Erwin Malcorps, Business Area President van Sweco Belgium

The partnership between VoltH2 and Sweco dates back to 2021. André Jurres explains how it came about: “At the time, we were looking for a local partner who is close to us, but who also has an international profile: Scandinavian by origin, but active in Benelux and Germany, which are, not coincidentally, the regions VoltH2 also has its sights on. Sweco’s hydrogen team, with its in-depth knowledge of local legislation, is well placed for our permitting processes. Moreover, they have the necessary technical know-how, with several relevant hydrogen projects in their track record and top experts.”

Construction of the green hydrogen plant in Delfzijl represents a concrete step towards a more sustainable future. VoltH2 and Sweco are proving with a bold vision and practical action that the energy transition is not only necessary, but also feasible, and achievable today.

Belangrijke mijlpaal: groene waterstoffabriek bereidt zich voor op bouwstart

© Sweco / VoltH2