EU and Bill Gates’ Breakthrough Energy Catalyst Fund Support Orsted’s Green Hydrogen-to-Methanol Project

By December 1, 2023 4   min read  (809 words)

December 1, 2023 |

2023 12 01 13 56 13
  • Commission, European Investment Bank and Breakthrough Energy Catalyst partnership funds first joint projects on climate technologies

Today, at the COP28 in Dubai, Commission Executive Vice President Maroš Šefčovič, Founder of Breakthrough Energy Bill Gates, and European Investment Bank President Werner Hoyer announced the first two European projects to be supported by the EU–Catalyst partnership: Ørsted’s FlagshipONE and Energy Dome’s Ottana CO2 Battery. Once completed, these two projects will be game changers in the clean tech sector and help the EU reach its 2030 climate targets. The partnership is providing €240 million in a combination of grants and commercial investment (equity and venture debt).

Commission President Ursula von der Leyen said: “With the EU-Catalyst partnership, we joined forces to scale up projects that are high-risk for companies, but high-gain for the economy as a whole. And I’m glad that we are supporting these ground-breaking projects by Ørsted and Energy Dome. They show that EU-Catalyst is more than an investment programme. It brings together brilliant minds and innovators, engineers and entrepreneurs, and investors from the private and public sector covering the so-called green premium. It is a winning formula.”

The EU-Catalyst partnership creates a blueprint for public-private support for clean tech innovative technologies. It aims to accelerate the deployment of innovative low-carbon technologies while also reducing their green premiums, that is, bringing their costs to a level competitive with fossil fuels. EU funding for the partnership comes from EU’s research and innovation programme Horizon Europe and the Innovation Fund within the framework of InvestEU, according to the established governance procedures. Breakthrough Energy Catalyst mobilises equivalent private capital and philanthropic grants to fund the selected projects.

FlagshipONE project – Ørsted

Located in Sweden and owned by Danish energy company Ørsted, the FlagshipONE project is a pioneering e-methanol production facility aiming to provide green  fuel for the shipping industry. The plant will use captured biogenic CO2 and renewable hydrogen to produce ~55,000 tons of e-methanol annually, making it Europe’s largest integrated e-methanol production facility.

Ottana CO2 Battery Project – Energy Dome

Headquartered in Milan, Energy Dome has developed the CO2 Battery, a long-duration energy storage technology based on liquified CO2. The CO2 Battery can provide storage for 10 hours or longer, and more competitively than lithium-ion batteries. With the support of the EU-Catalyst partnership, this project in Sardinia will build its first-of-a-kind, full-scale demonstration CO2 Battery energy storage facility.


The EU-Catalyst partnership was launched in 2021 at COP26 in Glasgow by President Ursula von der Leyen, President Werner Hoyer and Bill Gates, with the aim to develop large-scale green tech projects based in Europe and boost investments in critical climate technologies.

The European Investment Bank, as implementing partner of the Commission under InvestEU, has been tasked to deploy for the benefit of this partnership up to €420 million, made available from both Horizon Europe, which has already committed €200 million, and the Innovation Fund, which has committed €220 million. The EU-Catalyst Partnership does not exclude potential additional contributions from EU Member States or other private partners that decide to further support the projects. Interested projects can apply for support through the Breakthrough Energy Catalyst website.

Putting the world on track for net zero will require game changing technologies. The fact that they are not yet on the market means supporting innovation must be at the heart of climate action. Today we are announcing two groundbreaking projects financed under the EU Catalyst Partnership that provide concrete solutions to accelerate the green transition. Through our cooperation with the European Commission and Breakthrough Energy Catalyst we aim to support many more projects like this that support Europe’s climate goals and can be scaled up around the world.

Europe’s commitment to reach carbon neutrality has paved the way for European companies to be strong leaders in the development of innovative technologies. Through this collaboration, the European Commission and European Investment Bank are further demonstrating their unwavering support for scaling technologies. Breakthrough Energy Catalyst is pioneering a new path for public institutions to work with the private sector to advance projects from development to deployment. These projects will meaningfully reduce greenhouse gas emissions and make tangible progress towards Europe’s clean energy future.

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