Berlin Panorama

Source: Vattenfall

Future Connect North West

Project goals

Vattenfall and ONTRAS have set themselves the goal of supplying their customers with climate-neutral energy in the 2040s. The project Future Connect North West (Zukunftsnetz Nordwest) makes an important contribution to the supply of climate-friendly energy sources.


Vattenfall’s new gas-based plants are already being designed for the future. This means that these plants will be able to burn 100 % hydrogen. For existing plants, we are considering retrofitting the plants so that they can be (co-)combusted with climate-neutral hydrogen at a later stage. 

In addition to combined heat and power plants, the gas infrastructure also needs to be developed further. Both the upgrading of existing networks for the possible admixture of hydrogen and the expansion of a future-proof pipeline infrastructure are necessary.


Climate-neutral heat supply



For the implementation of a climate-friendly heat and power supply, it may be necessary to build a future-proof and reliable hydrogen infrastructure for Berlin’s northwest. In the medium term, the modern pipeline network of Future Connect North West is intended to supply the heat and power plant Reuter West with climate-neutral hydrogen. The project partners are making a significant contribution to reducing CO2 emissions.

The project

The project Future Connect North West is intended to be realised by the two project partners Vattenfall and ONTRAS. Together, these companies plan to connect Berlin's northwest to ONTRAS' hydrogen start-up network and thus to the European Hydrogen Backbone.

In order to supply the northwest of Berlin with climate-neutral hydrogen, the project envisages a routing through Berlin and Brandenburg. The current status presents possible routing options based on the existing planning. Potential corridors for the regional planning procedure were defined on the basis of these route alternatives.





The regional planning procedure was completed on 11.05.2022 with the regional planning assessment (Landesplanerische Beurteilung). It concludes that the spatial compatibility can be achieved for different routing options of the planned pipelines if (specific) requirements are implemented.

The detailed planning and assessment will be finalised after the planning approval procedure (Planfeststellungsverfahren). It is currently being evaluated when the next (approval) steps for Future Connect North West can be carried out in a reasonable manner.

Climate-neutral hydrogen

Climate-neutral hydrogen is an important component in securing and simultaneously decarbonising Berlin's electricity and heat supply. ONTRAS' hydrogen network for eastern and central Germany is an integral part of this. Vattenfall and ONTRAS want to jointly facilitate regional hydrogen transport by installing the Future Connect North West and connecting Berlin to the European Hydrogen Backbone. In this way, 100 % hydrogen can be transported to the northwest of Berlin and potentially used at other locations. In addition and as part of a larger hydrogen project, alternative connection options are being developed together with other network operators.

Planning of the routing

Within the scope of the completed regional planning procedure, the project partners developed possible routes for connection to the supra-regional gas pipeline network, based in particular on the following criteria:

  • Geographically suitable connection points to the nearest pipeline of the supra-regional transmission network in Brandenburg's Wustermark, Schönwalde-Glien or Hennigsdorf
  • The shortest, most environmentally friendly and least impacting connection to the heat and power plant Reuter West

The next steps

The regional planning procedure (Raumordnungsverfahren) was completed on 11.05.2022 with the regional planning assessment (Landesplanerische Beurteilung).

In the next step, the project will be prepared for the planning approval procedure (Planfeststellungsverfahren).

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