“ThinkTank-H2” – German expertise for the Russian anti-CO2 strategy

Sakhalin, the easternmost region of the Russian Federation, intends to reduce carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions to zero by 2025. For this purpose, the regional government has secured German support from the association “ThinkTank-H2”.

10/11/2021 – The association “ThinkTank-H2”, Stuttgart, announces the conclusion of a pre-agreement (Memorandum of Understanding – MoU) for the establishment of a PPP (Public-Private Partnership, Public Private Partnership – PPP) with the Government of the Sakhalinskaya Oblast. The agreement will promote the development of a low-carbon economy in Sakhalin Oblast. “ThinkTank-H2” will make particular use of its international contacts with science, politics, administrations, and investors to support the Sakhalin Oblast in its transformation from a fossil-based to a CO2-neutral economy by 2025 based on the comprehensive use of hydrogen (H2).

The aim of the MoU is to establish a competence center in Sakhalin for the use of hydrogen in the relevant areas of Sakhalin’s economy:
• Energy
• Transport
• Infrastructure.

From 2022, the competence center is expected to support all state and private organizations in Sakhalin in the evaluation of their project ideas and proposals with advice and technical expertise in the selection of hydrogen projects.

Valery Limarenko, Prime Minister of Sakhalinskaya Oblast: “Sakhalinskaya Oblast has set itself the ambitious goal of becoming the model region for the development of low-carbon energy in the Russian Federation. We are very pleased that our colleagues from ThinkTank-H2 in Germany would like to support us in this direction. “

Maria Ganchenkova, Rector of Sakhalin State University: “The development of international relations within the framework of education systems is our top priority. Our research programs are now essentially dedicated to research into the technical and economic use not only of oil and gas, but increasingly also of hydrogen. We see this as the decisive energy source, without which an energy transition to a carbon-neutral future is simply inconceivable. We are very pleased that we were able to win the ThinkTank-H2 to support us with its expertise and experience in this field. “

Lutz Bungeroth, Vice President of the ThinkTank H2, who represents the “ThinkTank-H2” in the advisory board of the competence center as project manager: “Here in the Far East of Russia, we see huge development opportunities for the energy carrier of the future, hydrogen, beyond the region for the whole of Russia and worldwide.” Raimund Nickel, CEO of WP Mobility & Industrial Solutions GmbH, Stuttgart: “We are pleased that our long-standing cooperation as WP MIS GmbH has now led us to this promising future cooperation with Sakhalinskaya Oblast and the University of Sakhalin. “

Background: The island of Sakhalin is in the Pacific Ocean north of Japan at about the same latitude as Germany between the Sea of Okhotsk in the east and the Sea of Japan in the west. Sakhalin is separated from the Russian mainland by the 7.3 km wide Sakhalin Strait, from the Japanese island of Hokkaidō by the 43 km wide La Pérouse Strait. Sakhalin Island is the largest known oil and gas deposit in Russia. In the coastal area east of the island, at least 700 million tons of crude oil and 2500 billion m³ of natural gas are estimated on an area of 20,000 km², reserves like those in the North Sea. Since 2001, the Sakhalin I project has been producing crude oil and natural gas. This was followed by a liquefied natural gas plant Sakhalin II in the south of the island and Sakhalin III. The raw materials are transported by pipeline to the Russian mainland via Khabarovsk to Vladivostok. Another pipeline leads to the Japanese island of Hokkaido.

Russia intends to take a leading position in the energy transition. In addition to oil, gas, and nuclear power, it wants to sell more hydrogen on the world market in the future. To this end, the company relies on state-of-the-art technologies and new projects. Sakhalin is to become a test field to produce hydrogen. At the beginning of September, at the Economic Forum in Vladivostok, the regional government signed a memorandum of understanding with the gas monopoly Gazprom and the state nuclear holding Rosatom on the development of hydrogen technologies. Among other things, it is about the establishment of a production facility for hydrogen by 2030, as Limarenko told the TASS news agency at the economic forum in Vladivostok. Production is scheduled to start at the end of 2024, initially with a capacity of 30,000 tons per year. In the final expansion stage, the factory is to supply 100,000 tons of hydrogen annually. The French company Air Liquide, a world market leader in the production of industrial gases, intends to participate in the project. Sakhalin is intended on the one hand to become an export hub for hydrogen to the Asia-Pacific region, and on the other hand to become a pioneer for the use of the fuel within Russia itself. In addition to wind turbines, Rosatom wants to involve nuclear power plants in hydrogen production by means of electrolysis in the future.

Sakhalin State University was founded in 1949, initially as a college for teacher training, and from 1998 as a state university. With financial support from Exxon Oil and Gas Limited, the Oil and Gas Institute was established at the university. Today, the university maintains five institutes, 2 colleges and 2 disciplines. Over 7800 students study at the university. In 2021⁄22, the university offers 43 higher education programs for bachelor’s degrees, 10 master’s programs, 7 postgraduate programs and 37 continuing education courses. For several years, the university has been offering new courses in applied mathematics, computer science, sustainable management of natural resources, oil and gas engineering, management, translation and translation studies, linguistics, ecology, journalism, maritime bioresources and aquaculture, etc. One focus of the research work at the university is the research of alternative energy carriers such as hydrogen.

“ThinkTank-H2” is independent and open to technology. He wants to provide guidance in the jungle of interests and arguments around the topic of hydrogen. To this end, he wants to initiate and support concrete projects for the introduction of hydrogen in all sectors. As an “honest broker”, he wants to mediate between the different interests. Members are international high-ranking representatives from research, business, science, and politics.

Further information and images can be found at https://thinktank-h2.org.

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