• Joint venture between Karlsson GmbH and EWE operates two-megawatt electrolysis plant
  • Green electricity from hydrogen powers Wintershall Dea’s transport vessel

H2Move – this is the name under which the energy transition through green hydrogen has now taken off in Cuxhaven in the truest sense of the word. Since Wednesday, a two-megawatt electrolysis plant operated by Turneo , a joint venture between Hamburg-based Karlsson GmbH and the energy service provider EWE, has been producing green hydrogen in Cuxhaven, supplying the fuel for the first of four supply vessels in the Mittelplate fleet of the energy company Wintershall Dea. The ship transports people and materials between Cuxhaven and the Mittelplate drilling and production island. The Mittelplate reservoir is by far the most important crude oil deposit in Germany and is located at a depth of 2,000 to 3,000 metres under the North Sea on the southern edge of the Schleswig-Holstein Wadden Sea National Park.

The official commissioning of the electrolysis plant and the ship Coastal Liberty, which has been converted to hydrogen hybrid propulsion, was attended by Turneo Managing Director Jochen Kaufholt, Tobias Moldenhauer, Head of Hydrogen at EWE, Robert Frimpong, Head of Wintershall Dea Deutschland, Cuxhaven’s Mayor Uwe Santjer and Olaf Lies, Lower Saxony’s Minister for Economic Affairs.

In the future, the plant will also produce hydrogen for other ships and provide a hydrogen refuelling station in Cuxhaven. The electrolysis plant thus also lays the foundation for onshore hydrogen mobility in Cuxhaven. The fact that the commissioning of the electrolyser went so smoothly is due not least to the trusting and cooperative partnership with Wintershall Dea, emphasises Jochen Kaufholt. The Turneo Managing Director is also pleased about the political tailwind and the support of the city of Cuxhaven. “I think this is a good day for ramping up the hydrogen sector in Germany and therefore for climate protection,” says Jochen Kaufholt in summing up.

Developing a hydrogen economy plays a central role in achieving the goal of a climate-neutral Ger-many; after all, the conversion of fluctuating renewable energies into hydrogen creates the possibility of providing green energy in line with the demand prevailing from time to time. Hydrogen is therefore an indispensable component for achieving the climate targets that have been set and for linking the three sectors of electricity, mobility and industry. EWE is therefore working with partners to promote the market launch of green hydrogen. “The local project is a good example of the regional production of hydrogen and its use in the mobility sector, particularly in the maritime segment,” explains Tobias Moldenhauer.

Robert Frimpong, Head of Wintershall Dea Deutschland, agrees with Moldenhauer and underscores the importance of the joint project for the environment: “We’re reducing our ecological footprint and will be able to sail through the Wadden Sea emission-free and much quieter in the future.” The conversion of the supply ship Coastal Liberty to the environmentally friendly hydrogen propulsion technology is another important step towards protecting the national park and world heritage site. “Many thanks to all those who paved the way for technological progress with their innovative spirit in this project. Pioneers and initial examples of concrete applications are laying the foundations for a climate-friendly future,” says Frimpong.

The hydrogen produced onshore in Cuxhaven is transported in tank trailers to the Mittelplate ship Coastal Liberty, where it is converted into electricity using a fuel cell. The electricity is stored in batteries that drive the ship’s electric motor. “We’re convinced that this innovative technology will prove its worth and that we’ll be able to reduce emissions in the Wadden Sea as much as possible,” explains Martin Buttchereit, Project Manager at Wintershall Dea Deutschland, and thanks the shipping company Acta Marine for the professional conversion of the Coastal Liberty.

Lower Saxony’s Economy Minister Olaf Lies explains: “To successfully ramp up our hydrogen economy, we must now invest in developing the market. This means that we need reliable producers and buyers of hydrogen. And that calls for innovative companies that invest boldly in the future. Turneo, EWE and Wintershall Dea are precisely those companies that are shaping the transformation process towards renewable energy sources.”