Hydrogen Production Facilities
Grant for scaling up fully renewable hydrogen production via electrolysis (OWE)
OWE is the short name for a new Dutch grant to stimulate Dutch investments in the production of green hydrogen via electrolysis. The grant can be applied for the realization and operation of production facilities for renewable hydrogen (‘electrolysers’). The grant scheme was officially published in the Staatscourant on 29 September 2023.
Hydrogen via electrolysis overview
This grant is for companies that invest in (purchase and use of) an installation for the production of fully renewable hydrogen using electricity from solar or wind. More specifically, these are electrolysers with a capacity of 0.5 to a maximum of 50 MW.
Applying for this grant is only possible during official application rounds. The first round took place from 30 November 2023, to 14 December 2023 (17:00 CET). A new round is expected in April/June 2024 (likely with some to-be-announced adjustments to the target group and subsidy conditions).
The grant amount can vary from project to project. The maximum grant percentage depends on company size: for large companies, the maximum grant amount is 40%. For medium-sized companies it is a maximum of 50%, and for small companies a maximum of 60%. Any other grants (such as EIA or SDE) may deducted from the OWE grant benefit. The application round in November/December 2024 had a subsidy budget of over 245 million euros, sufficient for approximately 10 to 15 applications.
The grant consists of two parts: an investment part and an operation part. The investment part is a contribution towards the costs of the electrolysis installation itself and is paid during the realization phase, which has a maximum duration of 4 years. The second part with the operating costs is paid during the operational phase of the installation. The grant applicant can determine the duration of the grant operation themselves, with a minimum of 7 years and a maximum of 15 years (rounded to whole years).
Meet the requirements
OWE grant scheme criteria
The electrolysers have to have an input capacity of minimum 0.5 and maximum 50 MW, for hydrogen production that is "fully renewable" according to EU standards.
The installation must be located in the Netherlands and must be connected to the electricity grid and/or have a direct connection with the wind or solar PV installation that generates renewable electricity.
The installation must emit 70% less greenhouse gases than a 'reference installation' (our experts can provide further explanation of this criterion, with calculation examples).
When applying for the subsidy, the following must be provided:
A feasibility study of the project (including revenue forecasts and operational calculations), the required (environmental) permits for the installation, and consent from the location owner.
For installations connected to the electricity grid, a recent 'transport indication' is also required (confirming the availability of transport capacity for electricity use by the grid operator).
Furthermore, it is important to note that at the time of the subsidy application, the hydrogen production installation must not be in use, and no irreversible commitments should have been made for the installation itself (such as payments or final orders).
The grant scheme operates on the tender principle: only the best projects receive grants. The key principle is to determine how much subsidy you need in relation to the input capacity of the electrolyser. In other words, the lower the requested grant amount (per megawatt of achievable electrical input capacity of the electrolyser), the greater the chance of receiving a grant. There may be exceptions to this rule in some cases.
Why this grant?
Purpose of the OWE grant
The Climate Agreement sets the ambition to scale up hydrogen production through electrolysis to approximately 500 MW installed capacity by 2025. The challenge is that electrolysis projects often do not materialize due to a substantial ‘unprofitable top’ and significant technological and financial risks. For this reason, the OWE scheme was introduced, offering a combination of investment and operational subsidies.
OWE is meant to complement existing grant instruments such as DEI+ (investment subsidy for pilot/demonstration projects), SDE++ (operational subsidy, including hydrogen from electrolysis), HER+ (investment grant for innovation projects leading to sustainable energy production at lower costs), VEKI (grant for CO2-saving investments with a payback period of five years or more), and IPCEI Hydrogen (for projects with a capacity of 100 MW or more).
Get in touch
What can EGEN do for you?
The experts at EGEN have years of experience with grants and know exactly what to watch out for in schemes that distinguish between investment and operational costs (such as OWE and the earlier SDE). They can help make your subsidy application optimally ‘competitive.’ Interested? Fill out the form below, and we will contact you soon!
“Despite being new, the scale-up instrument has many similarities with the SDE. Our years of experience with this instrument can therefore be used to prepare a good application as effectively as possible!”
Contact Joep Raats →
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