Attention to researchers and businesses: big help from the EU

EU funding for innovative researchers and businesses in low-carbon technologies has turned a new page: the European Commission has launched presently a third call for large-scale projects under the EU Innovation Fund. With a budget doubled to €3 billion, the new 2022-call for projects intends to boost the deployment of industrial solutions to decarbonise European growth and specifically focusing on the priorities of the REPowerEU Plan in energy security.   

At the head of the European funding management is the EU Innovation Fund, which is among the world’s largest funding facilities for projects in commercial innovative low-carbon technologies. The Fund in financed by revenues from the auctioning of allowances from the EU’s Emissions Trading System (EU ETS) and resulting increased revenues, it has already held two large-scale calls awarding €1.1 billion and €1.8 billion in grants to 7 and 17 projects respectively. The new call for 2022-projects is open for applicants among researchers and entrepreneurs located in the EU-27 states, Iceland and Norway until 16 March 2023.
More on the previous calls for innovation projects in:
https://cinea.ec.europa.eu/programmes/innovation-fund/innovation-fund-project-portfolio-dashboard_en

With currently estimated revenue of approximately €38 billion until 2030, the Innovation Fund aims to create perspective financial incentives for researchers, companies and national governance entities to facilitate investment in the next generation of low-carbon technologies and give EU companies a first-mover advantage to become global technology leaders.
As proposed under the European “Fit for 55” package, which is still presently being negotiated by the EU co-legislators, the Fund would be substantially increased to channel even more investments in breakthrough green technologies.
The Innovation Fund is implemented by the European Climate, Infrastructure and Environment Executive Agency (CINEA), while the European Investment Bank provides the project development assistance to promising projects that are not sufficiently mature.

On the occasion of the new call for commercial research projects, the Commission Executive Vice-President Frans Timmermans, noted that “today more than ever, we need to boost innovation and scale up technological solutions that tackle the climate crisis and bring Europe energy sovereignty”.
And he added that “the faster we do so, the quicker we will become immune to Russian energy blackmail. With this new call of € 3 billion, the EU Innovation Fund will support clean tech projects, speed-up the replacement of fossil fuels in hard-to-decarbonise industries and accelerate the uptake of renewable hydrogen in the EU market”.
Citation from: https://ec.europa.eu/commission/presscorner/detail/da/ip_22_6489

Projects directions and scope
The EU will fund projects covering the following topics:
= General decarbonisation (with the budget of €1 billion) seeking innovative projects in renewable energy, energy-intensive industries, energy storage or carbon capture, use, and storage, as well as products substituting carbon-intensive ones (notably low-carbon transport fuels, including for maritime and aviation);
= Innovative electrification in industry and hydrogen (with the budget of €1 billion) seeking innovative projects in electrification methods to replace fossil fuel use in industry as well as renewable hydrogen production or hydrogen uptake in industry;
= Clean technology & manufacturing (with the budget of €0.7 billion) seeking innovative projects in manufacturing of components as well as final equipment for electrolysers and fuel cells, renewable energy, energy storage and heat pumps;
= Mid-sized pilot projects (with the budget of €0.3 billion) seeking highly innovative projects in disruptive or breakthrough technologies in deep decarbonisation within all eligible sectors of the Fund. Projects should prove the innovation in an operational environment but would not be expected to reach large-scale demonstration or commercial production.
General reference to: https://ec.europa.eu/commission/presscorner/detail/da/ip_22_6489

Additional information for applicants: Project participants can apply via the EU Funding and Tenders portal where information on the overall procedure is available. Applicants will be informed about the results of the evaluation in the second quarter of 2023. The grant awards and signature of projects will take place in the fourth quarter of 2023. A webinar on lessons learned from the previous call and an Info Day will be organised during 29-30 November 2022 to give prospective applicants the opportunity to get information and ask questions on the new call.

More Information in the following Commission websites: = Questions & Answers; = Innovation Fund; = Funding and Tenders portal; = Info Day on the new call for large-scale projects; = Innovation Fund Project Portfolio Dashboard.

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