Europe may lose its green hydrogen industry to the US: Recharge

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EXCLUSIVE | European Parliament to vote on scrapping green hydrogen ‘additionality’ requirements

Hydrogen Europe presses MEPs to relax toughest regulations on green hydrogen production so European developers can compete with the US

13 September 2022

By Rachel Parkes

Europe’s renewable hydrogen industry is urging European members of parliament (MEPs) to vote in favour of a key amendment that would scrap strict “additionality” rules that would force green H2 producers to secure all their renewable electricity from dedicated sources, Recharge can exclusively reveal.

Amendment 13 to the latest overhaul of the Renewable Energy Directive (RED), due to be voted on by MEPs tomorrow (Wednesday), would also relax the proposed rules requiring green hydrogen producers to account for the provenance of all their renewable electricity on an hourly basis.

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Instead, producers would be allowed to source electricity from the grid, provided they could verify it as renewable electricity by securing power purchase agreements (PPA) from renewables installations for the equivalent amount.

The balance between PPA purchases and grid purchases would be accounted for on a quarterly basis until 2030, and thereafter on a monthly, quarterly or annual basis, as decided by the European Commission (EC).

Sponsored by German MEP Markus Pieper and his centre-right voting block, the European People’s Party (EPP), the amendment would also effectively “delete” the controversial draft Delegated Act on additionality, replacing it with the more flexible stipulations embedded directly into Article 27 of the RED.

Hydrogen Europe, which represents over 400 hydrogen-related firms and trade associations, has written to MEPs in a letter seen by Recharge, urging them to vote yes on the amendment, claiming that the change is essential to allow Europe to compete with the United States for green H2 investment and for European hydrogen producers to keep costs down.

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