Agreement between France, Spain and Portugal for an alternative to the MidCat gas pipeline

Spain, Portugal and France agreed on Thursday to replace the MidCat project with a new gas pipeline to transport gas and green hydrogen between Barcelona and Marseille, Spanish Prime Minister Pedro announced in Brussels. Sanchez. Initially launched in 2003, the MidCat (short for Midi-Catalonia) project aimed to link the French and Spanish gas networks via a 190-kilometre pipeline from Hostalric, north of Barcelona, ​​to Barbaira, east of Carcassonne, through the Pyrenees.

The finalization of the agreement for the beginning of December

“We have agreed to replace the MidCat project with a new project, which will be called the Green Energy Corridor, to connect the Iberian Peninsula to France and therefore to the European energy market between Barcelona and Marseille”, to -it is explained on his arrival for a European summit offered to the energy crisis. “It’s about creating a pipeline for green hydrogen but also temporarily for gas, which the European energy market needs,” he said.

Pedro Sanchez, French President Emmanuel Macron and Portuguese Prime Minister Antonio Costa are due to meet on December 8 and 9 in Alicante, Spain to finalize the agreement.

Longer term carrier of green hydrogen

Defended by Madrid and but also by Berlin, which sees it as a way of reducing the EU’s dependence on Russian gas, the MidCat was to enable Spain, which has 30% of European regasification capacity of liquefied natural gas (LNG), to export gas, coming by ship from the United States or Qatar, to the rest of Europe. This project – abandoned in 2019 due to its impact and an economic interest then deemed limited – was also intended to make it possible in the longer term to transport green hydrogen, the energy of the environmental future produced thanks to renewable energies, including Spain wants to be one of the champions.

Emmanuel Macron announced “the abandonment of the historic MidCat project (…) to promote a project that we will work on in the coming weeks in a very intense way as a threesome”. “The objective is to work on the intensification of our electrical interconnections and the densification of these, and to work on a hydrogen and renewable energy interconnection between Barcelona and Marseille”, he specified.

“So the objective of being better connected to the rest of the continent through Spain and Portugal is thus raised, and then the objective which was ours, to continue our climate and energy transition strategy, corresponds to this new project. “, it was necessary, adding that the project should benefit from European funding.


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