Last November, two relevant events took place at national and European level in the field of energy and hydrogen, which CIDAUT had the opportunity to attend.
On 16, 17 and 18 November, the 24th edition of the Energy and Environment Fair, GENERA, was held in Madrid. The Spanish Hydrogen Association, AeH2, organised on 16 November, in collaboration with the Spanish Hydrogen and Fuel Cell Technology Platform (PTE HPC), the conference ‘Green Hydrogen: towards a sustainable energy system’, which was attended by CIDAUT.
This day began with a brief welcome by Miguel Peña, secretary of AeH2, followed by a short introduction by Javier Brey, president of the Association, who began by stating that “interest in hydrogen in Spain is growing exponentially, not only in industry, but also among the population. This interest is more than justified due to the great potential of these technologies to move towards the decarbonisation of our economy”.
Subsequently, two round tables were held with the presence of representatives from the main entities involved in the hydrogen sector. The first round table, with the participation of Carlos de la Cruz Molina, Director of Evaluation and Technological Cooperation of the CDTI, and Santiago González, Head of Renewable Hydrogen in the Department of Regulatory Framework and Corporate Strategy of the IDAE, debated hydrogen as a reactivator of the economy. The second round table was entitled: “Accelerating the development of hydrogen in Spain”. It was attended by the directors and heads of the hydrogen areas of the AeH2 promoter partners.
At European level, the European Hydrogen Week 2021 (EHW 2021) was held in Brussels from 29 November to 3 December. In this edition a hybrid organisation between on-site and online was chosen. CIDAUT attended virtually to the different presentations that took place.
The Week discussed the tremendous opportunities associated with the production and use of hydrogen and hydrogen-based fuels in the different sectors of the economy and how hydrogen will play a key role in the European Green Deal. The EHW2021 marked the public launch of the Clean Hydrogen Partnership – as the successor of the Fuel Cell and Hydrogen Joint Undertaking (FCH JU). This edition featured sessions on the future research and deployment priorities for Clean Hydrogen as well the FCH JU Programme Review Days and the FCH JU Awards. The week will also saw the third European Clean Hydrogen Alliance Forum uniting its 1500 members. Topics covered the entire value chain needed to realise the hydrogen economy, scaling-up production, infrastructure, and end-use sectors, research and innovation priorities as well as skills and education.
The European Commission presented the European Green Deal on Wednesday (11 December 2019), outlining the main policy initiatives for reaching net-zero global warming emissions by 2050 and Hydrogen will be a key instrument for meeting the Green Deal objectives.
In this sense, several events are taking place in Europe to promote and develop hydrogen-based technologies and CIDAUT has attended two of them.
Following the launch of the 2020 Call for proposals, the FCH JU held its annual Info Day in Brussels on 27 January 2020.
The Programme Officers introduced the various call topics on transport pillar, energy pillar and cross-cutting area. Rules for participation, call conditions and evaluation were presented. In addition, it was given advice for a good approach according to the evaluators’ vision, as well as a review on communication and dissemination of results. It was finally made an introduction to Hydrogen Europe Industry and Research and some National Contact Points.
The event gathered almost 400 participants from across Europe, both on site and online. The deadline for submitting the proposals is 21 April 2020.
Following on hydrogen in Europe, CIDAUT has participated in the HyVolution event that took place on February 4-5 2020 at the Parc Floral de Paris. The two-day show provided an opportunity for meetings, discussions and business appointments, where all the players involved in the field of hydrogen were able to present their range of offers to the sector’s developers and decision-makers: products, services and applications for production, storage, distribution, gas-related technologies, etc. Some 120 exhibitors and brands were present at the show. The aim was to accelerate the deployment of hydrogen solutions by bringing together players from every potential market.
This year HyVolution 2020 hosted the third plenary session of the Hydrogen Valleys Partnership, attended by regional and European delegations. CIDAUT, as co-coordinator of the Working Group of Production, Transport and Storage participated in the plenary meeting and presented several pitches of project ideas, one of them developed by CIDAUT.
The plenary session was attended by FCHJU director Bart Biebuyck and Christian Weinberger of DG GROW who offered their vision on the future of innovation and financing in Hydrogen in Europe.
Hydrogen is an essential key in Europe’s energy transition and its efforts to cut carbon emissions and tackle climate change. It is therefore expected to play an important role in the European Commission’s Green Deal. The FCH sector is also a valuable source of future jobs and growth in a green economy and CIDAUT is focused on this strategy.
Different events have taken place in Brussels at the end of November in relation to hydrogen technologies and fuel cells. CIDAUT had the opportunity to be there.
Programme Review Days 2019
The Programme Review Days (PRD) 2019 took place on the 19th and 20th of November in Brussels preceding the FCH JU Stakeholder Forum on the 21st of November
The Programme Review Days, organised annually, aims to provide an overview on the progress of the FCH JU funded projects. It constitutes an excellent visibility platform for the projects and the technological developments achieved in the sector and provides networking opportunities for the participants.
A number of 27 projects and 3 studies as well as other FCH JU initiatives, were featured this year, gathered around the following main sessions: Hydrogen for Sectoral Integration, Fuel Cell Applications for Energy, Fuel Cell Applications for Transport and Support for Market Uptake.
FCH JU Awards 2019
The Awards were presented at a ceremony at the Royal Museums of Fine Arts in Brussels on 20 November 2019, attended by about 300 industry, research and EU representatives. The winners were chosen by public vote, which mobilised the European Fuel Cells and Hydrogen community around the 24 nominees – 12 for each category (success stories and innovation).
This year’s Best Success Story, ‘Driving forward fuel cell technologies’, is looking at a series of projects (VOLUMETRIQ, INSPIRE, CRESCENDO, GAIA and PEGASUS) which are making fuel cells more affordable and competitive.
“These projects are delivering results that enable Europe to be a leader in the fuel cell technology and have a strong impact on the clean energy transition. The aim is to pry open market potential, ensuring a greener future for the EU’s transport sector” said FCH JU’s Executive Director Bart Biebuyck.
BIG HIT project was presented with a special award for Best Outreach Hydrogen achievements in Scotland (Orkney Islands).
Stakeholder Forum 2019
“The green energy transition is not an option but a necessity. I see a pivotal role for clean hydrogen…it is an area where Europe is still leading. Why not extend the lead on something that could be one of the most important solutions for clean energy?” said Frans Timmermans, First Vice-President of the European Commission, in the opening session of the 2019 Fuel Cells and Hydrogen Joint Undertaking (FCH JU) Stakeholder Forum, on 21st November. ‘The most important thing is that you help us to find ways to make relatively quick successes to show people that it works’ continued Timmermans,” addressing the forum – energy and climate experts from industry, research, EU institutions and local and regional authorities.
Discussions among more than 500 Forum participants in Brussels’ Charlemagne building focused on how to tackle the remaining hurdles to deployment, the importance of promoting an innovation culture in activating new markets, and the impact of synergies and international scale-up efforts on growth and jobs. Delegates explored the latest developments in the sector, showing how Europe is capitalising on new FCH developments and forging ahead towards a zero-emission economy.
And to close the week, CIDAUT attended the meetings organized by the S3P Hydrogen Valleys working groups that took place on Friday the 22th November.
The working groups have been organized based on themes that arouse common interests for the development of interregional projects. Thus, CIDAUT as a representative and supporting the region of Castilla y León attended the meetings of the Hydrogen Production, Transportation and Storage groups, as well as Mobility uses. The objective of these groups is the approach of projects in the different themes that can be presented at the Hyvolution event that will take place on February 4 in Paris. CIDAUT will co-coordinate Production working group with Aragon Hydrogen Foundation and University of Bologna.
The Regions & Cities initiative (http://www.fch.europa.eu/page/about-initiative) is conducting a second round of workshops across Europe. The workshops are aimed to promote knowledge exchange on best practices in FCH project development and to discuss the way followed by European cities and regions to implement FCH projects.
Welcome and introduction to the workshop by Roland Berger team and Jorge Muyo from Government of Cantabria
After the successful first round of workshops with many interesting discussions and learnings, a second round has been conducted in various European cities in April 2018. This time, in Spain, it was held in Santander on April 24 at the Science and Technology Park of Cantabria. CIDAUT and Valladolid City Council attended the workshop as stakeholders of the initiative.
The meeting started with the welcome from Jorge Muyo, Director of Innovation, Technological Development and Industrial Entrepreneurship of the Goverment of Cantabria. It continued with the presentation of the main objectives by Roland Berger team, highlighting the exchange of experiences and lessons learnt on key topics in FCH projects under development. As experts in this type of projects, a review of best practices in implementing FCH projects was carried out. It was remark the importance of creating conducive framework conditions with soft measures and policies, scoping local FCH project concepts (key elements and success factors) and engaging local stakeholders with a proper management.
The workshop was attended by Carlos Navas as representative of the FCHJU who conducted a presentation on Hydrogen in Spain. He stressed that in order to achieve the CO2 emission reductions established in the 2040-2050 scenarios, decarbonisation measures necessarily pass through hydrogen technologies, especially in the transport and industry sectors. Taking into account the hydrogen economy: hydrogen allows more renewables in the energy system and enables sector-coupling. He highlighted the 7 roles for hydrogen in the energy transition.
Carlos Navas FCH JU presentation
Then, the University of Cantabria made an exhibition of the most relevant European projects on hydrogen technologies that are ongoing, among which stand out HYLANTIC Project and PEMFC-Sudoe Network Project. The project bound4blue, in collaboration with the Government of Cantabria, was also presented.
The meeting continued with the review by Roland Berger team of the different approaches for funding of FCH projects. Several potential funding sources for FCH projects were checked such as R&I funding (Horizon 2020 through the FCH JU), Structural funds (European Regional Development Fund (ERDF) and Cohesion Fund (CF)), Thematic Platforms (CEF), Technical support instruments (ELENA), National/Regional funds and Soft Loans (European Investment Bank (EIB)).
To close the meeting, a discussion on the future needs of the Regions and Cities was established in order to overview the way ahead of the FCH Regions Initiative. Establishing contacts between regions with common interests, organizing meetings and visits to visualize and evaluate success implementation cases, as well as improving the knowledge of technologies by the public administration and general public were the most relevant issues that were put on the table.
Finally, to close the event, the participation of the attendants was appreciated and we were all invited to the last General Assembly of the Initiative that will be held in Brussels on May 18.
Mª José Ruiz (Director of the Municipal Energy Agency of Valladolid) and Henar Olmedo (Cidaut Project Manager)
FCH Regions and cities initiative (http://www.fch.europa.eu/page/about-initiative) has set a series of workshops of the in different cities throughout in February- March 2018. The first one took place the 14th of February in Puertollano (Spain) in the National Centre of Hydrogen facilities. CIDAUT and Valladolid City Council had the opportunity to assist as part of the consortium of the initiative.
The workshop was attended by the mayor of Puertollano, Mayte Fernández, who together with the Minister of Economy of Castilla La Mancha, Patricia Franco, welcomed the opening of the Congress. Both stressed that the workshop was a good opportunity to expose the great potential of hydrogen in terms of energy. Emilio Nieto as Director of the National Centre of Hydrogen made an introduction to give way to the beginning of the workshop.
The workshop also had the presence of Enrique Girón as a representative of the FCHJU who kindly attended to all the doubts of the attendees regarding the initiative, as well as other issues related to projects financing. During the whole workshop the debate was moderated by the Roland Berger consultancy as coordinators of the initiative.
The different speakers were exposing the opportunities of hydrogen as an alternative energy source. Thus, Guillermo Figueruelo of the Hidrogeno Aragón Foundation presented the different projects they are involved such as HyER and BIGH2IT.
Carlos Funez presented the projects on hydrogen generation, hydrogen refuelling stations and the promotion of hydrogen vehicles from the point of view of CNH2 and INDHO. Jose Antonio Gago from ENAGAS presented a flagship proposal on Hydrogen corridors to cover Spain and Portugal, proposal that is supported by numerous entities that gathers a great consortium.
Regarding Valladolid, Henar Olmedo from CIDAUT stated that the City Council of Valladolid is working in a FCH roadmap, and, as signatory of the Covenant of Mayors, it has a Sustainable Energy and Savings Plan (SEAP). Any improvement of energy efficiency goes through the study and use of alternative energy to fossils such as renewable energy and can be hydrogen. The project to be implemented by the city council comes first in the awareness of citizens towards an unknown source of energy and reputed to be dangerous. Within the FCH technologies, the municipality has in mind the use of hydrogen in garbage trucks or buses.
Finally, as the closing of the event, the attendance of all the participants was appreciated and the next workshop was located in April, possibly in Santander.