Germany’s Federal Ministry of Economics (BMWi) and the Federal Ministry of Transport (BMVI) selected 62 large-scale hydrogen projects this week, which are to be state-funded as part of a joint European hydrogen project (Important Project of Common European Interest, IPCEI).
We are making Germany a hydrogen country. In doing so, we are rethinking mobility—European and holistic—from the energy system to drive technologies to the fueling infrastructure. Traffic is currently more than 95 percent dependent on the use of fossil fuels. We therefore urgently need mobility that relies on renewable energies. Green hydrogen and fuel cells are—across all modes of transport—a great addition to pure battery vehicles.
The fact is: we must and want to promote the switch to climate-friendly mobility urgently. In order to cover all areas of mobility with zero-emission solutions, we need technology openness. That is why we also support fuel cell technology as well as vehicle and component manufacturers, so as not to miss the boat internationally. Today we are taking a giant step towards climate-friendly mobility.
—Federal Minister of Transport Andreas Scheuer
We want to become number 1 in the world in hydrogen technologies. To do this, we are pooling our strengths in Europe and initiating massive investments in the future technology hydrogen with the first joint European hydrogen project. That secures competitiveness and jobs—in Germany as well as Europe. We are providing more than 8 billion euros in federal and state funds for the 62 German projects selected today and, with the selected projects, cover the entire value chain—from hydrogen generation and transport to industrial applications. We are taking a big step on the way to making our economy climate-neutral. A central area for this is the steel industry as well as the chemical industry.
—Federal Minister of Economics Peter Altmaier
The €8 billion is made up of federal and state funds. Around €4.4 billion comes from the Federal Ministry of Economics and up to €1.4 billion from the Federal Ministry of Transport. The remaining funds are made available by the federal states. Investments totaling €33 billion are to be triggered, including more than €20 billion from private investors.
The 62 major hydrogen projects were selected from more than 230 project outlines received and represent the entire value chain of the hydrogen market.
In the BMWi department, 50 project outlines were selected. These include project sketches for generation plants that together comprise more than 2 gigawatts of electrolysis capacity for the production of green hydrogen. This corresponds to 40% of the target set in the National Hydrogen Strategy of 5 gigawatts by 2030.
Hydrogen pipeline projects will advance with a total length of around 1,700 km (1,056 miles). A particularly large amount of emissions can be saved in the CO2-intensive steel industry. ArcelorMittal, Stahl Holding Saar, Salzgitter Stahl and Thyssenkrupp SteelAll have submitted investment projects.
A number of innovative projects in the chemical industry use the CO2-free production of hydrogen for the production of ammonia or synthetic fuels for freight or air traffic.
The Federal Ministry of Transport is funding 12 projects in the mobility sector. These concern the development and manufacture of fuel cell systems and vehicles—from cars to trucks to municipal vehicles.
In addition, for example, the development of a nationwide and cross-border networked hydrogen refueling infrastructure is being promoted. Also, the aerospace and maritime sector is addressed.
The German projects are funded as part of a European project (IPCEI Hydrogen) together with up to 22 European partner countries. The various national projects are to be networked with one another in such a way that all countries benefit from one another and a European hydrogen economy can be built up together.
Federal Minister of Economics Altmaier kicked off this initiative in December 2020 during the German EU Council Presidency. The aim is for the projects to be approved by the European Commission under state aid law this year. BMWi and BMVIwork closely and trustingly with the European Commission for this purpose.
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