The second edition of the European Hydrogen Week kicked off today in Brussels, with an opening address from the President of the European Commission, Ursula von der Leyen. Almost 2000 registered participants are joining online speakers from across Europe and beyond to discuss how to move forward in the transition to a clean hydrogen economy in the EU and beyond.
One of the highlights of the Hydrogen Week is the launch of the Clean Hydrogen Partnership, which will take over all the activities of existing FCH JU.
President von der Leyen said in her opening speech: “Clean hydrogen will have a central place in the climate-neutral economy of the future and I am proud of Europe’s role as the world’s clean hydrogen trailblazer. At the beginning of this year, more than 200 new hydrogen projects had been announced globally. 55 per cent of them are in Europe… We have to scale-up clean hydrogen production, expand its applications, and create a virtuous circle where demand and supply feed each other and bring the prices down. This is without any doubt a global endeavour, but I want Europe to be leading the race”.
“This new Partnership builds on years of cooperation promoted by the Fuel Cell and Hydrogen Joint Undertaking. And many thanks for that. And it brings that model to the next level. It is a new big step forward to bring innovative technologies from the laboratory to the factory and, ultimately, to European businesses and consumers” (..) “Clean hydrogen is the energy of the next generation”, President von der Leyen concluded.
Jean-Eric Paquet , Director-General of DG Research and Innovation, highlighted the importance of hydrogen valleys: “to further build the hydrogen economy in the EU, we need to ensure that the whole of the EU benefits from hydrogen production scale up, distribution and end-users applications, more European Hydrogen Valleys for instance are needed and it would be important to build connections between old and new European Hydrogen Valleys”.
René Schutte, Chair of the FCH JU Governing board, mentioned in turn: Hydrogen as “hero net zero” is necessary to meet the climate goals. Building the hydrogen value chain and economy unleashes many opportunities in Europe as a frontrunner to create skills, knowledge and jobs. This can only be obtained by a joint research and innovation agenda and joint investment from public and private partners. The Clean Hydrogen Partnership will strongly contribute to this.
“A new energy system is emerging in a very clear way (…) Everybody loves hydrogen because it can be produced from different energy sources, for different uses, and it will be one of the backbones of the new energy economy” , concluded Dr. Fatih Birol, Director of the International Energy Agency”.
“The Clean Hydrogen Partnership is built on more than a decade of successful research and innovation in Europe and it is now ready to contribute to Europe’s green evolution together with the other partnerships. It’s a great result for the entire community and I’d like to congratulate the industry, research and policy partners as well as the programme office for their work during these past years”, commented Bart Biebuyck, Executive Director of the FCH JU.
The Council of the EU has adopted on 19 November the regulation establishing Clean Hydrogen Joint Undertaking (Clean Hydrogen Partnership).
Clean Hydrogen will build on the success of FCH JU to accelerate the development and deployment of a European value chain for clean hydrogen technologies, contributing to sustainable, decarbonised and fully integrated energy systems. The EU will support the Clean Hydrogen JU with €1 billion euro for the period 2021-2027, complemented by at least an equivalent amount of private investment (from the private members of the partnership).
Together with the Hydrogen Alliance, it will contribute to the achievement of the Union’s objectives put forward in the EU hydrogen strategy for a climate-neutral Europe. It will focus on producing, distributing and storing clean hydrogen and on supplying sectors that are hard to decarbonise, such as heavy industries and heavy-duty transport applications.
Read the full speech of President Von der Leyen at the opening of the European Hydrogen Week.
Read the full Council Regulation on establishing joint undertakings under the Horizon Europe programme.
Read the full statement of the Council of the European Union on establishing joint undertakings under the Horizon Europe programme.
Read the full statement of the European Commission.