Innovative Waste-to-Energy projects approved for EU funding


The selection of three projects involving Waste-to-Energy technologies in the Innovation Fund confirms the European Commission's support for decarbonisation actions in the sector.

08.26.2021_IF_WtE Projects Selected_Small

Three Waste-to-Energy projects selected by the Innovation Fund

Among the thirty-two small-scale projects selected for funding, three are related to the waste management sector and involve Waste-to-Energy technologies. A demonstration of how the Waste-to-Energy industry is pathfinding new solutions to reduce its carbon footprint, with the support of the European Union.

The projects, located in Italy and Spain, focus on the following technologies: the manufacture of carbon-negative aggregates for construction, the production of Waste-to-Hydrogen for rail transport, and the generation of hydrogen from waste gasification processes.

  • 1) Carbon-negative aggregates in Spain

This project will use “Accelerated Carbonation Technology” to revalorise residues from waste incineration plants by converting them into carbonate minerals with CO2 captured from refinery processes.

The processes will rely on waste CO2 from Repsol-Petronor’s refineries to produce a carbon-negative aggregate to be used in the construction sector. This technology will allow treating around 22 000 tons of waste every year and will cut carbon emissions by an estimated 2 200 tons annually.

For more information, you can find the announcement from O.C.O here: 

  • 2) Waste-to-Hydrogen in Italy

The production of green hydrogen will cover the demand of different sectors in the Val Camonica valley (Brescia Province), including industry, but also rail transport, with a first hydrogen train expected in 2023.

This electrolysis-based hydrogen will be powered by renewable energy, mainly produced by the local Waste-to-Energy plant. A2A, Snam and FNM, the Italian companies leading this project, estimate that the production of green hydrogen will reach 830 tonnes each year, powered by 43 870 MWh of electricity.

For more information, you can find an article here (IT):

  • 3) Generation of hydrogen from gasification of waste in Spain

For this project, Spanish companies Tubacex and Novargi will work together to produce hydrogen from a gasification process of solid municipal waste.

The hydrogen generated will be sold to the transport sector and to energy-intensive industries. It is estimated that the treatment of 12 000 tonnes of waste should produce about 1 600 tons of hydrogen each year.

According to Novargi’s statement: “The purpose of NOVARGI’s “HyValue” technology is to bridge the circular economy with the low-carbon economy by material valorization of municipal solid waste (MSW) into hydrogen. The base of this innovative process is the product-oriented integration of state-of-the-art technologies to prioritize low-temperature processes and minimize the thermal requirements at high temperature, which results in higher energy efficiencies and hydrogen yields. The first demonstration plant is designed to process 12,000 tons/year of MSW and produce 1,600 tons/year of fuel-cell quality hydrogen to be used in transportation, material handling and energy-intensive industry sectors“.

The Innovation Fund: low-carbon technologies in energy-intensive industries

Including those three examples, a total of 32 small-scale projects will receive 118 million € through the first edition of the Innovation Fund. The Innovation Fund, launched at the end of 2020, is one of the European funding instruments for pioneering technologies.

The selected projects, located in 14 Member states plus Iceland and Norway, will develop low-carbon technologies, e.g. development of carbon capture and renewable hydrogen, in energy-intensive industries.

The list of all the approved projects is available here. You can find more news and graphics in the official PR of the EC, here.

Selected large-scale projects to be announced by the end of the year

The decision of which large-scale projects will be funded by the Innovation Fund is expected by the end of the year.

Two Waste-to-Energy plants recently made the shortlist: Klemestrud in Oslo, Norway, and Amager Bakke in Copenhagen, Denmark. Both projects plan to equip the existing plants with carbon capture technologies to become carbon-neutral or even carbon-negative.

To find out more about those projects, please read our previous article.

Other news