RWE Gas Storage West has received the planning approval
Hydrogen storage in Gronau-Epe
RWE Gas Storage West has received the planning approval for the expansion of the gas storage site in Gronau-Epe to include additional plant components for hydrogen storage. The Arnsberg district government will publish this decision from January 29, 2024.
The approval process started in April 2022. RWE submitted the framework operating plan for approval in February 2023. The planning approval procedure included an environmental impact assessment and public participation. Parallel to the approval process, RWE presented the project to the neighborhood, political representatives and the general public at several events.
Germany's first commercially used hydrogen cavern storage facility is to be built largely on the existing premises of RWE Gas Storage West GmbH at Kottiger Hook by the end of 2026. The preparatory construction measures will start soon in order to meet the tight schedule for the project. The relevant planning documents have already been submitted to the Arnsberg district government.
RWE would like to use two caverns in Gronau to store approx. 66 million cubic meters of hydrogen. For this purpose, a cavern still under brine and a cavern currently used as a natural gas storage facility are to be converted and supplemented with the necessary above-ground operating facilities and connections. The storage facility is an important part of the infrastructure required for the ramp-up of the hydrogen economy.
RWE has applied for funding for the construction of the storage facility as part of the "IPCEI Hydrogen" (Important Projects of Common European Interest). Funding approval is still pending. The final investment decision can therefore not yet be made by RWE. The Federal Ministry of Economics and Climate Protection and the state of North Rhine-Westphalia have already selected projects for which funding will be made available in the event of a positive decision at European level. RWE's hydrogen storage facility is on this list and has already received approval for an early start to the project.
More information on the hydrogen project in Gronau can be found on the projekt-homepage.