Nearly $14 Million Announced to Advance Clean Hydrogen Innovation
Round One Makes Up to $8 Million Available to Address Challenges of Decarbonizing Industrial Process Heat and Advancing Clean Hydrogen Production and Renewable Energy Integration
August 18, 2023
Governor Kathy Hochul today announced a nearly $14 million initiative to advance clean hydrogen research, development, and demonstration (RD&D) projects. The first round of funding makes up to $8 million available for projects that address the challenges of decarbonizing industrial process heat and advancing clean hydrogen production and renewable energy integration. Today's announcement supports the Climate Leadership and Community Protection Act goals to reduce emissions 85 percent by 2050 and transition to 100 percent zero-emission electricity by 2040.
“New York State is leading the nation in advancing clean hydrogen technologies and we are committed to staying ahead of the curve in this new industry,” Governor Hochul said. “Through our support for emerging innovation in the hydrogen field, we are solidifying our leadership position in developing this alternative fuel to help reduce emissions, create the jobs of the future in our state, and secure a healthy and sustainable New York for generations to come.”
Through the first round, New York State Energy Research and Development Authority (NYSERDA) is seeking applicants comprised of single entities or teams to compete for funding under two technical challenge areas including hydrogen applications to decarbonize industrial process heat and clean hydrogen production and integration with renewable energy. Proposals will be accepted in the following categories:
Category A: Feasibility and Research Studies - Conduct preliminary research into the concepts underlying new products, systems, strategies, or services as a first stage of development that are necessary to ultimate product development and commercialization.
Category B: Product Development – Advance efforts that are crucial to the development of a marketable technology product, system, strategy, or service and any testing or validation of an innovation that is not already commercially available and may lead to the commercialization of products manufactured in New York State.
Category C: Pilot and Demonstration Projects - Demonstrate and test innovative technologies, systems, strategies, or services that require testing to reach commercialization or are already commercially available but have not yet gained industry acceptance or significant deployment in New York State.
Category D: Federal Cost Share Projects – Provide New York-based companies funding to achieve Advanced Research Projects Agency-Energy (ARPA-E), DOE, US National Laboratory, or other federal funding award cost-sharing requirements, and increase the likelihood of successful company development and technology commercialization. Projects must still support the challenge areas for each round.
Round Two, anticipated to open later this year with up to $5.8 million available, will build on Round One with three new technical challenge areas to include mitigation of nitrogen oxide (NOx) emissions from hydrogen combustion, hydrogen storage technologies and hydrogen-based generation systems for microgrids and grid support services.
NYSERDA President and CEO and Climate Action Council Co-Chair Doreen M. Harris said, “New York is fostering a clean-hydrogen ecosystem that supports our emissions reduction goals while advancing the technology needed to scale this growing and impactful resource. Each project awarded will become a part of the State’s holistic plan to support the exploration of hydrogen as a resource while advancing the development of a connected network of projects across the state – from production and manufacturing to end use – that will increase job opportunities, reduce reliance on fossil fuels and help us better integrate renewables onto the grid.”
This new funding will operate in tandem with New York State’s overall advancement of a clean hydrogen ecosystem which includes a May funding announcement focused on providing cost share for projects applying for federal clean hydrogen funding opportunities and the Northeast Regional Clean Hydrogen Hub (NE Hub) initiative. While the NE Hub proposal submitted focuses on clean hydrogen deployment across the broader Northeast region, the initiative announced today will fund RD&D efforts that are most relevant and critical to advance a clean hydrogen economy in New York and support the achievement of the Climate Act goals. Awarded projects will pave the way for future hydrogen hub project deployment and strengthen the regional hydrogen strategy put forth by the NE Hub states including New York, Connecticut, Maine, Massachusetts, New Jersey, Rhode Island and Vermont, and over 100 hydrogen ecosystem partners. The group’s collaborative proposal was submitted to the U.S. Department of Energy in early April for hydrogen hub funding and designation as a regional hub under the federal Infrastructure and Jobs Act. DOE’s decision is expected in the fall of 2023.
New York State Department of Environmental Conservation Commissioner and Climate Action Council Co-Chair Basil Seggos said, “The significant investment announced today to support hydrogen research and innovation is advancing New York’s efforts to reduce fossil fuel use as part of our ambitious climate agenda. The clean hydrogen projects supported by this funding will aid New York’s transition to a clean energy economy tomorrow and help meet the State’s aggressive climate targets to ensure a cleaner, greener environment for future generations."
Assemblymember Didi Barrett said, “Alternative fuels like clean hydrogen will be essential to achieving our climate goals while ensuring continued energy reliability. This new initiative will help address the challenges of decarbonizing industrial heat processes and advancing clean hydrogen production in sectors that will be difficult, if not impossible, to electrify.”
Thomas Koch Blank, RMI Managing Director, Climate Aligned Industries, said, "The IRA mobilizes an unprecedented level of resources behind the development of green hydrogen projects, but several additional enablers are required to activate the market. This NYSERDA initiative is exactly the kind of state-level support that is needed to complement federal incentives and help further catalyze the hydrogen economy."
The initiative announced today was developed in alignment with the Climate Action Council’s Scoping Plan approved in December 2022, which identified strategic use of low-carbon fuels such as clean hydrogen as an important means of decarbonizing sectors that are challenging to electrify. In addition, environmental justice and disadvantaged community stakeholder perspectives have been instrumental in shaping the challenges and areas of focus for solicitations.
This announcement builds on New York State's investments in research, development, and commercialization to support innovators that are accelerating the low emissions and carbon sequestering technologies needed to meet the state's goal for economy-wide carbon neutrality. NYSERDA's Innovation program is deploying $800 million over 10 years as direct investments via grants and wrap-around commercialization support. More than $680 million in private investments and $200 million in project finance capital have been enabled, and more than 450 innovative clean energy products have been commercialized as a result of NYSERDA's technology and business development investments, including LED lighting systems, home appliances, longer-lasting batteries, and more efficient heating-and-cooling systems.
Funding for this initiative is through the State’s 10-year, $6 billion Clean Energy Fund. More information about this funding is available on NYSERDA’s website here.
New York State's Nation-Leading Climate Plan
New York State's nation-leading climate agenda calls for an orderly and just transition that creates family-sustaining jobs, continues to foster a green economy across all sectors and ensures that at least 35 percent, with a goal of 40 percent, of the benefits of clean energy investments are directed to disadvantaged communities. Guided by some of the nation’s most aggressive climate and clean energy initiatives, New York is on a path to achieving a zero-emission electricity sector by 2040, including 70 percent renewable energy generation by 2030, and economywide carbon neutrality by mid-century. A cornerstone of this transition is New York's unprecedented clean energy investments, including more than $35 billion in 120 large-scale renewable and transmission projects across the state, $6.8 billion to reduce building emissions, $3.3 billion to scale up solar, more than $1 billion for clean transportation initiatives, and over $2 billion in NY Green Bank commitments. These and other investments are supporting more than 165,000 jobs in New York’s clean energy sector in 2021 and over 3,000 percent growth in the distributed solar sector since 2011. To reduce greenhouse gas emissions and improve air quality, New York also adopted zero-emission vehicle regulations, including requiring all new passenger cars and light-duty trucks sold in the State be zero emission by 2035. Partnerships are continuing to advance New York’s climate action with nearly 400 registered and more than 100 certified Climate Smart Communities, nearly 500 Clean Energy Communities, and the State’s largest community air monitoring initiative in 10 disadvantaged communities across the state to help target air pollution and combat climate change.
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