Chile is considering 10 green hydrogen projects in a tender for a total of $50mn in financing aimed at accelerating the country's transition away from fossil fuels.
EU companies figure prominently in the roster of rivals, reflecting a climate push in Brussels. The companies that presented projects to Chile's development agency Corfo are France's Air Liquide; Chilean steelmaker CAP; Copenhagen Infrastructure Energy Transition Fund I K/S; Italy's Enel Green Power Chile; France's Engie; Spanish-Enagas-controlled GNL Quintero; Chile's Imelsa Energia; Germany's Linde; France's Hydrogène de France; and Sociedad de Inversiones Albatros.
The tender will award a maximum of $30mn to any one project, so the outcome expected to be announced in December will result in at least two winners. Eligible projects must have at least 10MW of electrolyzer capacity and start operating no later than December 2025.
The projects that were presented in the tender have an average capacity of 20MW, surpassing green hydrogen plants in operation elsewhere in the world, Corfo noted.
Chile is counting on extensive renewable energy — mainly photovoltaic solar and wind power — to spawn a green hydrogen industry on the scale of its giant copper industry. More solar and wind projects were awarded in a power auction yesterday.
The government has pledged to reach carbon neutrality by 2050. The decarbonization drive was recently dealt a setback when two coal-fired power plants were brought back on line to cope with the effects of severe drought on hydroelectric supplies.