EU Invests €3.6 Billion of Emissions Trading Revenues in Innovative Clean Tech Projects
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The EU Commission is awarding over €3.6 billion to 41 large-scale clean tech projects, to be financed through the EU Innovation Fund. With a focus on the REPowerEU Plan and phasing out Europe’s imports of Russian fossil fuels, these projects cover a wide range of industries, such as cement, steel, advanced biofuels, sustainable aviation fuels, wind and solar energy, and renewable hydrogen and its derivatives. The funding will contribute to the greening of significant sectors of the European economy, in particular those that are difficult to decarbonise.
The selected projects are located in 15 EU Member States: Austria, Belgium, Croatia, Czechia, Denmark, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Ireland, Italy, the Netherlands, Portugal, Spain and Sweden; as well as Norway. The supported projects will all enter into operation before 2030, and have the potential to avoid 221 million tonnes of CO2 emissions in their first 10 years of operation.
The 41 projects were selected following the third call for large-scale projects, covering four topics: “general” decarbonisation; “industry electrification and hydrogen”; “clean tech manufacturing”; and “mid-sized pilots”.
See related article: EU Parliament Adopts New Rules for More Charging Stations and Greener Maritime Fuels
Projects in brief
- In “general” decarbonisation topic: 8 projects worth €1.4 billion
They include 3 projects from refineries and 5 projects in the cement and lime sector, and are located in Belgium, Croatia, Germany, Greece, the Netherlands, Portugal, and Sweden.
- In “industry electrification and hydrogen” topic: 13 projects worth almost €1.2 billion
They include 6 projects on renewable hydrogen production as well as 7 projects on hydrogen use in different sectors: chemical industry, refineries and steel. The projects are located in Austria, Belgium, France, Germany, the Netherlands, Portugal, Spain, Sweden and Norway.
- In “clean tech manufacturing” topic: 11 projects worth almost €800 million
They include 4 projects on electrolyser manufacturing, 4 projects on batteries (including recycling) and 3 projects on photovoltaic panels and modules, located in Belgium, Denmark, Germany, Finland, Spain, Sweden and Norway.
- In “mid-sized pilots” topic: 9 projects worth €250 million
They include 2 projects on wind energy, 2 on ocean energy, 2 on chemicals, and projects in the glass sector, on carbon capture and on e-fuels. The projects are located in Czechia, Denmark, France, Germany, Ireland, Italy, the Netherlands, Spain and Norway.
The selected projects were evaluated by independent experts against five award criteria: ability to reduce greenhouse gas emissions compared to traditional technologies; level of innovation; operational, financial and technical maturity; scalability; and cost effectiveness. In addition to the 41 projects selected for funding today, other promising but insufficiently mature projects will receive project development assistance from the European Investment Bank. These will be announced in the fourth quarter of 2023. At the end of the year, the Commission will launch the next call for proposals for large-scale projects under the Innovation Fund, with an increased budget of €4 billion.