EU approves injection of 5.4 billion in aid for hydrogen projects

The European Commission yesterday authorized the injection of 5,400 million euros of public aid to Hy2Tech, a mega research and innovation project on the hydrogen value chain with the participation of 15 countries, including the ‘Spain, a decision with which it is intended to promote political European industry and accelerate the energy transition.

“Hydrogen has great potential for the future. It is an essential component of the diversification of energy sources and the green transition. Investing in these innovative technologies can however be risky for a single Member State or a single company”, explained the Vice-President and Head of Competition, Margrethe Vestager, to justify the need to support these projects with state aid. “That’s where they have a role to play,” he said.

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Image of the Iberdrola plant in Puertollano (Ciudad Real).

Ipcei brings together 41 projects involving 35 companies with different profiles

The Hy2Tech is what is called an Important Project of Common European Interest or Ipcei, by its acronym in English, a Community instrument to promote industrial collaboration between countries in key technological fields, such as hydrogen or energy photovoltaic. In this case, 15 EU Member States participate: Austria, Belgium, Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Italy, Netherlands, Poland, Portugal and Slovakia.

Ipcei includes 41 projects involving 35 companies with different profiles, including the Spanish Sener, Iveco Spain, Nordex and H2B2. The objective of the European megaproject is to deepen all aspects of the clean hydrogen value chain, from generation to storage or the development of applications for the mobility sector, including the production of new hydrogen materials. efficiency electrodes, more efficient fuel or transportation technologies.

The injection of 5.4 billion euros in state aid will serve as an incentive to mobilize, according to Brussels calculations, an additional 8.8 billion euros from the private sector, a massive investment that should create 20,000 jobs. Spain is one of the most active countries in the EU in hydrogen research and has presented four projects at Ipcei.

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Patricia Coll

The challenges of the energy transition Circulo Ecuestre

The war in Ukraine gave greater strategic value to this mega project

The war in Ukraine has given greater strategic value to this mega energy research and innovation project, Vestager said. “It became very important to accelerate what we had already planned,” he said. Brussels will give the green light in September to another Ipcei also in the field of clean hydrogen.

“Together, they will increase industrial hydrogen supply and demand on a large scale like never before,” said Internal Market Commissioner Thierry Breton, who recalled that the EU’s goal is to produce ten million tons of clean hydrogen in 2030, which will replace 40,000 million cubic meters russian gas.

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