PtX Hub in Colombia

Leveraging existing infrastructure and hydrogen demand to kickstart the transition to net zero

To reach climate neutrality by 2050, Colombia plans to accelerate its PtX development fast. The National Hydrogen Strategy and Roadmap published in September 2021 sets the ambitious target to reach 1 GW electrolysis capacity by 2030. The strategy earmarked 40 % of low-carbon hydrogen for industrial use and plans to expand the hydrogen infrastructure in the transport sector, focusing on long-haul heavy duty.

It is worth noting the activity of the Colombian private sector in hydrogen. The sector is currently leading the research and development of hydrogen applications, and thus arousing the interest of investors. Local sectors are also beginning to cooperate on PtX: Ecopetrol and the Colombian Petroleum Institute announced a green hydrogen pilot project with an electrolyser capacity of 50 kW at the Cartagena refinery in 2022., Promigas, a transportation company for natural gas, began with an exploratory pilot for producing green hydrogen and blending (mixture) with natural gas in transportation and distribution networks in the Mamonal industrial zone in Cartagena.

The private sector is supported by the Colombian government , for instance through the call “+H2 COLOMBIA. This  initiative, created by the Fund for Non-Conventional Energies and Efficient Energy Management (FENOGE), and supported by the Ministry of Mines and Energy,  contributes to the development of the Hydrogen Roadmap in Colombia. This initiative seeks to promote and encourage knowledge and applications of green and blue hydrogen throughout the value chain in Colombia. Likewise, it seeks to design investment and financing mechanisms with public loans and grants  that promote the development of the emerging hydrogen market. The Fund for Non-Conventional Energies and Efficient Energy Management (FENOGE) together with the World Bank and other cooperation agencies are supporting the pre- and feasibility studies of the 10 winning initiatives. 

For a rapid PtX ramp up, Colombia can further benefit from existing infrastructure for transporting and exporting natural gas. Cartagena in the North of the country is the fifth largest harbor in Latin America. Three more harbors connect Colombia with partners at the Pacific and Caribbean Coast.

From grey to green: Satisfying the local industries’ demand for hydrogen

More than 27 % of Colombian energy currently comes from renewable energy sources. Fraunhofer Institute predicts that 200 TWh per year will go towards PtX production by 2050.

Looking towards the usage of PtX products, several Colombian industries, such as the steel, mining, and cement industry can benefit. Local petroleum refineries and ammonia producers currently demand and consume 0,2 MtH2 grey hydrogen per year. This demand might be satisfied with green hydrogen and green ammonia in the future and export opportunities will be explored.

The PtX Hub’s work in Colombia at a glance 

1. Policy advisory on sustainability, standards, and certification

  • Organising conferences, webinars, and workshops on EU sustainability criteria for green hydrogen imports including safety standards in the production, transport and storage of green hydrogen, ammonia, and methanol
  • Advising on the integration of PtX in the national hydrogen roadmap and on regulatory norms to incorporate PtX technologies
  • Conducting dialogues on enabling policy frameworks for PtX

2. Studies on PtX decarbonization potential, capacity building with trainings and trips on renewable PtX

  • Conducting the Training with decision-makers of Colombian ministries, companies, and research institutes
  • Building on the basic training with add-on modules on certification, security, transport infrastructure, and policy frameworks
  • Conducting a Train-ofTrainers programme with local energy experts 
  • Organising delegation trips and regional exchanges to facilitate knowledge sharing
  • Expanding the knowledge and supporting the transformation process with studies on existing infrastructure, potential hydrogen hubs and PtX technologies in Colombia, land use and deep dives on specific applications