Zuid-Holland and partners receive EU-subsidy for a large-scale hydrogen project for inland shipping




The Province of Zuid-Holland and partners will receive half a million Euro from the European Committee for the RH2INE-programme. The subsidy will be used for research into hydrogen-powered shipping between the harbours of Rotterdam and Genoa.

The goods transport by hydrogen-powered inland shipping between the harbours of Rotterdam and Genoa has come one step closer. The joint venture RH2INE, in which the Province of Zuid-Holland participates, received half a million Euro in subsidy for further research into a grand plan. Zuid-Holland, the German federal state North Rhine-Westphalia, and the ports of Rotterdam. Duisburg and RheinCargo had made an application. They also contribute half a million Euro to the further research themselves.

The target is to have at least 10 vessels run on hydrogen along the main trade routes between the port of Rotterdam and Cologne -the Rhine-Alpine corridor- in 2024. For this purpose, three hydrogen fuel stations will be created along the route. In 2050 that number must be increased, allowing the inland shipping to use hydrogen all the way to Genoa. Around twenty parties collaborate in RH2INE, among which authorities and companies that enable the use of hydrogen.

The European subsidy will be used for research into how best to realise the hydrogen fuel stations, the technical details, the required legislation in the various countries and the locations to supply the vessels with hydrogen fuel. Via RH2INE (Rhine Hydrogen Integration Network of Excellence) the parties intend to learn from each other as well. They do this by exchanging knowledge regarding the use of hydrogen in inland shipping. These are parties that each play a part for hydrogen, from production and distribution to its use in vessels.

Sustainable objectives

According to the European Committee, the application for subsidy comes at a brilliant moment. It links seamlessly with Brussels’ sustainable objectives in its search for alternative fuels and the plans to become more sustainable after the corona-crisis. “The proposal is well-written and sound. It shows the coherence of the targets, activities and budget”, is the verdict of the subsidy provider.

“Hydrogen is an intrinsic part of the future economy and is one of the cleaner solutions for the heavy goods transport over longer distances”, states Regional Minister Floor Vermeulen (Transport, Public Works, and Water Management). “To achieve this, you need each other and I am proud of the parties that participate. From production, distribution to purchase. I view this subsidy as an incentive with which Europe indicates that we are on the right track. It also links with Zuid-Holland's ambition to achieve a better balance between mobility and an attractive living environment.”

“We are incredibly happy with the positive decision regarding the cross-border promotion of the hydrogen technology. This shows that we are on the right track with our RH2INE-programmen to make goods transport more climate-friendly”, says Minister Andreas Pinkwart of Innovation and Energy in North Rhine-Westphalia. “The future hydrogen market needs to link up internationally. North Rhine-Westphalia takes this into account in its close cooperation with the Dutch Province of Zuid-Holland.”