The EU Parliament on February 10, 2021  approved the Recovery and Resilience Facility, designed to help EU countries tackle the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic. The RRF is the biggest building block of the €750 billion Next Generation EU recovery package. €672.5 billion in grants and loans will be available to finance national measures designed to alleviate the economic and social consequences of the pandemic. Related projects that began on or after 1 February 2020 can be financed by the RRF, too. The funding will be available for three years and EU governments can request up to 13% pre-financing for their recovery and resilience plans.To be eligible for financing, national recovery and resilience plans must focus on key EU policy areas – the green transition including biodiversity, digital transformation, economic cohesion and competitiveness, and social and territorial cohesion.

French and German governments support Air Liquide and Siemens Energy joint objective, as mentioned in a Memorandum of Understanding signed on February 8, 2021, to combine their expertise in PEM (Proton Exchange Membrane) electrolysis technology to “laying the ground for mass manufacturing of electrolyzers in Europe, especially in Germany and France.”

As electrolyzer technology development has been a multinational affair, starting in 1789 with Dutch Jan Rudolph Deiman and Adriaan Paets van Troostwijk using an electrostatic machine and a Leyden jar for the first electrolysis of water, with Brit Michael Faraday developing in fact the Faraday’s Laws of electrolysis, and DeNora from 1923 commercializing electrolysis in Italy, the same year as Umberto Nobile flew the first hydrogen Norge zeppelin over the Arctic, over the last ten years a solid German – French industrial alliance is pushing the EU energy policy buttons to introduce hydrogen into EU’s sustainable energy mix, i.e Important Projects of Common European Interest. Germany in its National Hydrogen strategy, published last Juny 2020 acknowledged, not to be able to produce sufficient green hydrogen to satisfy industrial demand for hydrogen in the future, this Franco – German alliance is eying EU’s Green Deal and national Recovery and Resilience Facility billions for electrolyzer and hydrogen pipeline development to keep production of the main hydrogen equipment in Europe. However folllowing the principles of reverse innovation and in view of Europe’s shortage of green hydrogen in the future, the transfer of these climate technologies to emerging economies is entering increasingly the game. In fact the PreCOP 26, in Milan from 30 September – 2 October 2021, co-organized by the UK and Italy who share the presidencies of the G7 and G20 this year as well commit “to build resilience and unlock sustainable finance, including for the world’s most climate vulnerable countries”.

Local Hydrogen Alliances, like the Community Hydrogen Forum (CH2F), a platform in Northwest Europe increasingly help everyone understand the opportunities hydrogen technologies  and to be a forum for national, regional, and local governments, energy agencies, community development groups, energy cooperatives, educational institutions, renewable energy developers, transport sectors, and grid operators to  help steer this process. The forum is organizing a Hydrogen Triple Alliance  webinar on February 18, 2021.