A European Commission economic recovery plan to boost the EU's troubled economy due to the pandemic shows renewables may get some part of the €1 trillion package being planned for various industries. (Photo Credit: Mauro Bottaro/European Commission)
- A leaked EU document shows the EC is planning to include renewables, hydrogen and clean mobility in its economic recovery proposal due to be released officially on May 27, 2020
- The document shows €25 billion of capital investment planned to tender 7.5 GW of renewables each over the next 2 years
- EIB will be roped in as co-financier to support €10 billion for national renewable schemes
A total capital investment of €25 billion ($27 billion) for a tendering scheme for 15 GW of renewable electricity projects over the next 2 years along with €10 billion ($11 billion) support for national renewable schemes using co-financing by the European Investment Bank (EIB) – these measures are reportedly part of recommendations of a €1 trillion ($1.09 trillion) recovery plan meant to stimulate European Union (EU) economy that’s reeling under the COVID-19 impact. The European Commission (EC) is still working on the stated plan and is expected to make it official on May 27, 2020, however, European media network Euractiv has shared the above information from a draft working document of the plan leaked from a trusted source.
The 15 GW scheme, divided between 7.5 GW in the next 2 years, is likely to support 25% of the market
Stressing on the importance of including renewables in the stimulus package while pointing out the 20% to 33% expected decline in wind and solar markets in Europe, the EC document reads, “A green recovery package should ensure acceleration of renewable energy projects, specially wind and solar, both local projects at distribution level as large scale projects at transmission level, and of cross border relevance. Support action will avoid job losses and present good potential for job creation.”
The said document, available on Euractiv’s website, shows the green recovery topics the EC plans looking at, including building renovation, renewables and hydrogen, and clean mobility.
For clean hydrogen, the document Euractiv refers to shows the EC may recommend doubling the amount of clean hydrogen research and innovation that currently adds up to €650 million ($708 billion). At the same time, €10 billion will be doled out for the next 10 years, including co-financing with a view to ‘substantially reduce risks’ of large and complex projects such as hydrogen. An EIB administered fund may also be set up to grant loans for hydrogen infrastructure with a total value of €10 billion annually.
Another important aspect of the document is a clean hydrogen commitment of 1 million tons in order to scale up its production which will be launched through a pilot scheme of carbon contracts for difference (CCfD), similar to renewable energy tenders.
In April 2020, several stakeholders in Europe including businesses, trade associations and European Members of Parliament launched a Green Recovery Alliance to lobby for green principles to be at the heart of the EU’s financial recovery plans post COVID-19 (see Green Recovery Alliance Launched In Europe).