Gas Quality

Gas is a natural resource whose composition can vary depending on its origin. Agreed-‎upon gas quality parameters with accompanied ranges which allow for the safe storage, ‎transmission, distribution and use are of great importance, especially in an international ‎context. ‎

The need to address the differences in natural gas compositions was identified with the ‎very first steps of gas market liberalisation in Europe. Harmonisation of gas quality ‎specifications at the EU entry points and between EU Member States is fundamental to ‎efficient and competitive trading. ‎

Guiding the way to harmonisation

The gas quality issue was raised at the first European Gas Regulatory Forum, also known ‎as the Madrid Forum, back in 1999. The creation of EASEE-gas in 2002 was fully ‎supported by the Madrid Forum and the European Commission and harmonisation of ‎natural gas quality was identified as one of the core issues that the association should ‎address. ‎

With members from across the entire gas value chain, EASEE-gas gathers all the key ‎actors, including producers and end users, needed in the discussion on gas quality.‎

In 2005, EASEE-gas issued a Common Business Process (CBP) with recommendations ‎of natural gas quality parameters and ranges aiming to reduce and eliminate existing ‎cross border quality barriers in Europe. The CBP, which is widely referred to within the ‎industry, formed the basis for the development of the mandated European standard for ‎H-gas quality (EN 16726 “Gas infrastructure - Quality of gas - Group H”) which was ‎published first by the European Standardisation Body (CEN) in 2015. EASEE-gas ‎continues to collaborate closely with CEN and other European stakeholders to improve ‎this standard.‎

Facilitating the transition to renewable and low carbon gases

The transition to a climate-neutral society is both an urgent challenge and an immense ‎opportunity. Renewable and low carbon gases and hydrogen in particular will play a key ‎role in achieving this goal. ‎

Repurposing the existing gas infrastructure for hydrogen transport is a low-hanging fruit ‎in the development of the hydrogen market in Europe. It is a cost-effective and ‎sustainable solution. ‎

However, quality specifications need to be defined at EU level to ensure a safe transport ‎of hydrogen and avoid trade barriers. These specifications need to be set by considering ‎the different requirements for the production, transmission and end use of hydrogen and ‎the technical characteristics of the gas network.