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Germany reaches €393m in support for hydrogen and fuel cell technology

Germany has so far spent €393 million on the development of hydrogen and fuel cell technologies.

By Kari Williamson

Some €216m, or 55% of the total, has been spent on transport, which includes hydrogen production and infrastructure.

In its latest review the National Organisation for Hydrogen and Fuel Cell Technologies (NOW) has increased the profile of ‘Hydrogen Production and Delivery’ to an independent category.

This follows the launch in May of this year of a separate and additional Federal funding initiative of €200m exclusively for energy storage, which in turn followed the German Government’s decision to abandon nuclear power.

This decision has promoted green hydrogen to the top of the agenda, as a necessary adjunct to the expanding renewable share of electricity generation, ITM Power says.

Dr Klaus Bonhoff, NOW’s MD, says: “Hydrogen and fuel cell technologies are gaining momentum. This is due not least to the central role attributed to storing energy generated from renewable sources in the form of hydrogen. In the future, hydrogen will be one of a number of emission-free transport fuels, given the fact that the step by step reconstruction of the transport sector has already begun.

“Fuel cells will not only be used in combination with hydrogen in the transport sector, but in the coming years, together with natural gas, fuel cells will also provide a highly efficient solution for the stationary sector. Even, in niche markets such as the protection of critical infrastructure, for example, in telecommunications, fuel cells as off-grid systems are becoming ever more attractive.”

The Federal subsidies mentioned above, totalling some €900m, which will be matched by industry, do not include the substantial financial support offered at the state leve.

Phil Doran, Managing Director of ITM Power GmbH, comments: “While Germany has more than proved its metal in the field of clean technology developments, which has earned it global recognition, the decision to abandon nuclear power has given added impetus to the renewable cause in general and green hydrogen and fuel cells in particular.

"It is difficult to convey the seriousness with which Germany is pursuing its goals, in the full knowledge that it is creating a set of industries which will ensure its manufacturing status and export capacity is maintained well into the 21st century”.

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