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                GREY, BLUE AND GREEN
At present, hydrogen is predominantly produced by splitting natural gas. Due to the CO2 that is released into the air, this
is called grey hydrogen. The production
of blue hydrogen is somewhat cleaner: natural gas still forms the basis, but the CO2 released is captured and stored or reused, for example in horticulture. The production of green hydrogen is climate neutral and is done by splitting sustainable electricity with pure water in an electrolyser.
   The northern Netherlands can boast two crucial preconditions for the production of green hydrogen
Groningen Seaports comprises the ports of Delfzijl and Eemshaven. The drive to pursue and develop green hydrogen (see box) as a solu- tion to climate issues is highly pragmatic, as becomes apparent from the explanation by programme manager industrial business innovation & smart utilities Herbert Colmer. Natural gas plays a substantial role in the industries in both ports and their surrounding regions. “Hydrogen is extracted here from natural gas for production processes. The car- bon that is released during this process enters the atmosphere as CO2. If you want to change this, you need to come up with a sustainable alternative feedstock to natural gas. In 2017, we therefore drew up a roadmap for the phased development of a green hydrogen economy.”
The northern Netherlands can boast two crucial preconditions for
the production of green hydrogen. Colmer: “The generation of
green hydrogen via electrolysis requires sustainable electricity. This
is available here from offshore wind farms and via an electricity cable from Norway. Furthermore, a cable is currently being laid for electricity from Denmark.” The second precondition relates to the ability to transport the hydrogen. “The northern Netherlands constitutes the hub of the European gas network. In the future, these pipes can also be used for hydrogen.” In addition, underground gas fields and salt
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