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A Portion of More Than €1.8 Billion in EU Funding Has Been Allocated to Three Utility-Scale Clean Hydrogen Projects

By July 14, 2022 3   min read  (475 words)

July 14, 2022 |

Fuel Cells Works, A Portion of More Than €1.8 Billion in EU Funding Has Been Allocated to Three Utility-Scale Clean Hydrogen Projects

As part of the second large-project funding request for the EU Innovation Fund, three utility-scale clean hydrogen projects were awarded a portion of more than €1.8 billion in awards, significantly increasing their chances of commercial operation.

Among the 17 winners are two green hydrogen initiatives and one waste-to-hydrogen scheme based in the Netherlands. As of writing, no information could be found on the size of the grants.

“The Innovation Fund is an important tool to scale up innovations in renewable hydrogen and other solutions for European industry,” said Frans Timmermans, executive vice president of the European Commission. “Compared to the first disbursement round, the funds available have increased by 60%, enabling us to double the number of projects supported.”

One of the two renewable hydrogen projects, Shell’s 400MW Holland Hydrogen 1, gained FID last week for the first 200MW phase.  Using the 750MW Hollandse Kust Noord offshore wind farm currently under construction in the Dutch North Sea, the business plans to bring the facility online by 2025 and double its capacity by 2027. Shell’s Rotterdam refinery will replace a portion of its conventional hydrogen with renewable hydrogen produced by the plant via an open-access pipeline.

A second project, Air Liquide’s 200MW ELYgator, will produce 15,500 tons of green hydrogen annually by using its “flexible electrolyser dispatch” concept, which will use wind and solar power to reduce grid congestion. H2 will be produced for industrial and transportation purposes.

As part of the FUREC project, RWE is developing a waste-to-H2 scheme that will produce 54,000 tons of hydrogen annually from non-recyclable solid waste in Limburg. According to RWE, green hydrogen will replace gray in the chemical industry, while a hydrogen link will connect Dutch ports with Germany’s Ruhr region.

Nordsee Two, a 433MW offshore wind farm in the German North Sea in which RWE holds a 51 percent stake, will also receive funding. As part of the project, Northland Power of Canada and the firm propose to include 4MW of electolyser capacity for vessel refueling and emergency power.

In Belgium, Vestas has begun testing the “world’s first” hydrogen-powered personnel transfer vehicle.

Along with EU Innovation Fund subsidies recently announced by the Commission, this financing will promote green hydrogen projects through carbon contracts for differences (CCfD).

The Netherlands has a long history of transferring hydrogen via pipeline.  In a recent announcement, the Dutch government revealed plans to build the world’s first national H2 transmission network using repurposed natural gas pipelines. Other nations may have difficulty replicating this ambitious plan.

With these projects, the EU will contribute to its ambitious hydrogen ambitions, established as part of the REPowerEU program, to produce and import ten million tons of green hydrogen by 2030. It will take 200GW of electrolyzers, which is more than 300 times as much as the green H2 projects that received financial support this week, as well as 600GW of new renewable energy.

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