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The renewable hydrogen industry switches gear to deliver the REPowerEU targets

Date

19 May 2022

Sections

Energy

The rules defining renewable hydrogen production remain instrumental

 Hydrogen Europe welcomes the European Commission’s efforts to switch gear towards an accelerated deployment of renewable energy and renewable hydrogen. This is a proper response to the energy crisis the EU is facing due to the war in Ukraine. Delivering sufficient electrolyser capacity by 2030 for the 10 million tonnes of locally produced hydrogen and an additional 10 million tonnes in imports is an enormous challenge. At the same time, it is a massive opportunity to develop a strong European hydrogen supply chain, break free of fossil fuels and deliver the ambitious climate goals. This opportunity is only achievable with a supportive regulatory framework and adequate financing in place. 
Defining a clear marketplace for renewable hydrogen and support its uptake is the most important measure to accelerate the energy transition. We welcome the increased ambition to deliver 45% renewable energy by 2030, along with clear sectorial targets for the consumption of renewable hydrogen.  An increased target for renewable hydrogen in industry by 2030 is achievable and the right way to tackle hard-to-abate industrial emissions. Renewable hydrogen as e-fuels in transport has a massive potential; we very much welcome increasing the transport target to 5%. We call on the co-legislators to go one step further and introduce additional sub-targets in the maritime and aviation sectors as well as specific support for the road transport infrastructure roll out. These, along with adequate incentive schemes such as carbon contract for difference, are non-regret policies that will set a clear pathway for the industry and will unlock massive capital from investors.  

Jorgo Chatzimarkakis, Hydrogen Europe CEO, commented: “Hats off to the European Commission for drawing up this impressive legislative package in record time. Substituting fossil fuels and accelerating Europe’s energy transition requires strong demand and supply side signals which the REPowerEU makes very clear. The increase in sectorial sub-targets, the mobilisation of large funding and the guidance on permitting will facilitate a rapid growth in renewable energy projects. Finally, the industry needs simple and applicable rules to produce renewable hydrogen. Therefore, the publication of the two Delegated Acts defining renewable hydrogen remains instrumental for the industry to accelerate.”

The pace of renewable hydrogen deployment is closely dependent on our capacity to accelerate the deployment of new renewable energy capacity. Therefore, we very much welcome the regulatory proposals and guidance on permitting for new wind and solar projects as well as the fast-tracking of over 100 hydrogen IPCEIS projects by summer.  

Hydrogen Europe strongly supports the efforts to prepare for hydrogen imports and trade via the European Global Hydrogen Facility and the establishment of hydrogen import corridors. Adapting and expanding transport and storage infrastructure for hydrogen will need to go hand in hand with the renewed ambition. Hydrogen Europe welcomes the proposal to increase funding through the Connecting Europe Facility, as well as efforts to strengthen the Innovation Fund to support the deployment of electrolyser manufacturing. 

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Hydrogen Europe is the leading organization representing European based companies and stakeholders that are committed to moving towards a (circular) carbon neutral economy. With more than 350 companies, 30+ national associations and 20 EU regions as members, we encompass the entire value chain of the European hydrogen and fuel cell ecosystem. Our vision is to propel global carbon neutrality by accelerating the European hydrogen industry and we are the industrial key partner of the Clean Hydrogen partnership.

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