This roadmap will outline the financial costs and benefits of gaseous electrofuels (chemical fuels derived from electricity) in suppport of deep decarbonisation of the Irish and heat and transport sectors

Project Insights

  • €130,200

    Total Project Costs
  • 3 yr

    Project Duration
  • 2019

    Year Funded

Project Description

Ireland will generate over 30% of its electricity from wind by 2020. Technical limitations on the electricity grid means that ~3% is currently curtailed or constrained and therefore not capable of being used by electricity consumers. With increased penetration of renewables, this figure could rise as high as 7-14% by 2030. Concurrently, Ireland is not on track to meet its 2020 targets for renewable heating (RES-H) and renewable transportation energy (RES-T), and faces severe challenges for achieving 2030 targets. This project will provide a roadmap to policymakers in Ireland for gaseous electrofuels (chemical fuels derived from electricity) to reduce curtailment/constraint and drive deep decarbonisation in heating and transport through sector coupling. The nationwide deployment of two electrofuels, hydrogen and synthetic methane, (i) into the natural gas grid and (ii) directly at vehicle filling stations. The roadmap will outline the financial costs and benefits of electrofuels for deep decarbonisation and sector coupling. It will enable policymakers to assess potential supports necessary to stimulate investment in the technology. The roadmap will be based on detailed techno-economic modelling of the technologies coupled with geographical information systems (GIS) mapping to identify suitable locations for investment and the design of supply chain networks to avail of economies of scale. Key technical challenges such as (i) the sourcing of renewable hydrogen and carbon dioxide, (ii) the use of grid electricity to maintain high electrolyser operating hours, and (iii) local decisions to produce hydrogen or methane for grid or filling stations, among others will be addressed.

Project Details

Total Project Cost: €130,200

Funding Agency: SEAI; Gas Networks Ireland (GNI)

Year Funded: 2019

Lead Organisation: National University of Ireland, Galway (NUIG)

Rory Monaghan | Lead Researcher(s)