The Government is encountering a flood of applications to receive European funds to build projects linked to the green hydrogen revolution , which does not emit greenhouse gases as it is produced with renewable energies. In all the processes of distribution of subsidies under the PERTE for renewable energies of the Recovery Plan linked to hydrogen, the requests for subsidies are far exceeding the aid budget foreseen in each of the programs.
The Ministry for Ecological Transition is carrying out massive screening of candidate projects for applications. The latest corresponds to the 100 million aid program for large industrial projects for the construction of electrolyzers, the device used to produce hydrogen by separating the hydrogen molecules from the oxygen molecules in water, using electricity which, in the case of green gas, must be produced by renewable energies.
The Government, through the Institute for Energy Diversification and Saving (IDAE), has received applications from a total of 23 projects requesting aid amounting to 324.7 million euros, more than three times the planned allocation. After this selection phase, eight of the projects have already been left out of the process (six for not meeting the requirements or not sufficiently justifying the conditions of the initiatives and another two that have resigned to continue), which included requests for 78 million euros of aid.
In the final stretch of the process, 17 projects are still going ahead, requesting aid for 246.7 million, still more than double the budget contemplated in the program, so there is still another sifting to be done based on the scores established according to the characteristics of each one of the projects.
Energy giants are still in the fight for the 100 million subsidies, among which are the oil companies Repsol, Cepsa and BP, and the electricity companies Endesa, Acciona and, above all, EDP, which still has four candidate projects to obtain the millionaire subsidies, according to the analysis of the public documentation of the aid distribution process carried out by EL PERIÓDICO DE ESPAÑA, part of the Prensa Ibérica group. Among the companies that have been left out of the process is the electricity company Naturgy.
The Government must now carry out a new massive screening among the 17 that are still candidates, through a scoring system that will assess the technological characteristics of each project, its economic viability, the generation of employment in the area where the facility is located or its ability to contribute to the process of just transition in areas that lose other energy facilities. In fact, several of the projects that continue to compete for European funds are those linked to areas with former coal-fired power plants, such as As Pontes (in A Coruña), Aboño (in Asturias) or Los Barrios (Almería).
A year ago, the Government launched the strategic project for economic recovery and transformation (PERTE) linked to renewable energies and green hydrogen with 6,900 million euros of European funds (now just extended to 7,900 million) and which seeks to mobilize another 16,000 million of private investment. As part of the plan, 1,555 million of public funds are earmarked for renewable hydrogen to mobilize another 2,800 million of private capital, so that Spain can play a relevant role in the green hydrogen revolution.