26 May 2023
What’s new on the H100 Fife Project?
Those already familiar with H100 Fife, also referred to as the Hydrogen Neighbourhood Trial, will know that it will be the world’s first green hydrogen gas network. Located in Levenmouth on the east coast of Scotland, H100 Fife is led by SGN.
The project will employ a direct supply of clean power, sourced from a local 7MW Offshore Renewable Energy Catapult (OREC) wind turbine, to produce green hydrogen for domestic heating in up to 300 homes. It aims to provide the crucial evidence required to inform the viability of a wider rollout of 100% hydrogen for domestic heating, ahead of the UK Government’s heat policy decisions, expected in 2026.
The H100 Fife project is expected to go live in 2024 and be operational until March 2027. It has the potential to save almost 3,000 tonnes of CO2 over its lifetime.
H100 Fife is an interesting and important project to follow. Depending on the outcome of the trial, it has the potential to set the gas industry on a defined path towards net zero. We can already say with certainty that decarbonisation of gas will be crucial to achieving a carbon-neutral energy system and that our industry needs to join the low-carbon economy in preparation for a sustainable future; projects like this will help us find out how we get there - and understand the changes we will need to make along the way.
So here’s what’s new on the H100 Fife project:
Construction of the hydrogen demonstration homes is underway
In March, SGN hosted senior members of Fife Council and local housing associations to mark construction getting underway on their hydrogen homes demonstration facility. During this event, SGN were able to announce that the minimum number of required participants for the project (270) has now been surpassed, with more households being encouraged to opt in.
The demonstration facility will open this summer in Fife Energy Park, where it will sit alongside the project’s hydrogen production facility and storage site. It will comprise two hydrogen show homes where visitors can try out domestic hydrogen appliances to see how they compare to their natural gas equivalents. In the interim, interested H100 Fife participants are being welcomed to a demonstration hydrogen kitchen at the Fife Renewables Innovation Centre.
Hydrogen production and storage site appointment marks a major milestone
The H100 Fife hydrogen production and storage site in Fife Energy Park will be critical to the success of the project; ensuring a continuous supply of hydrogen into the homes that have volunteered to take part, whatever the weather.
Altrad Babcock has been appointed as the main works contractor for the project, responsible for building and integrating key elements of the site, which was developed to the final design stage by SGN in collaboration with Arup. The appointment marks a major milestone for the H100 Fife project, which has had to overcome the commercial and procurement challenges familiar to so many construction projects right now. Construction work looks set to begin during the next few months.
Work begins on the hydrogen gas network
The homes taking part in the H100 Fife project will be supplied with hydrogen via a new hydrogen gas network. Construction of this world-first green hydrogen-to-homes network has now begun. It will be built alongside the existing gas network in the Buckhaven and Denbeath areas of Levenmouth, Fife. This will allow the area’s residents to remain on their existing gas supply if they choose not to take part in the project.
The H100 Fife network construction project is expected to last 15 months and will take place in five stages, in an effort to minimise disruption to the local community. The system will be designed and built to ensure the same high safety and reliability standards expected from the current gas system. SGN held a public information event covering network construction on 19th April, which was attended by over 140 people. They will be continuing to communicate with the local community through a regular online construction update, as well as local signage and an email newsletter.
Community engagement initiatives
SGN is working hard to engage with and support local communities as work progresses on the H100 Fife project, including partnering with Bright Green Hydrogen to provide STEM activities in local schools and sponsoring the East Fife Community Football Camp.
This type of community engagement - along with regular, open and transparent communication with all stakeholders - will be crucial to the success of the project and to similar projects designed to forward our nation’s net zero ambitions. If we’re going to decarbonise gas, we’ll need to get everyone onboard and ready for the changes.
Xoserve is keen to help everyone in the gas industry have their voices heard as our nation makes the transition to a carbon-neutral energy system.
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