The European Commission has provided EUR 39.4 million funding to support eight sustainable transport projects selected under the Connecting Europe Facility Blending call instrument specifically designed to mix private financing with EU support.
This latest batch of the selected projects brings the total for this call to 44 for an EU support of almost EUR 300 million.
“These 8 additional projects bring the total selected under this call to 44, signaling the excellent uptake from government and the private sector to deploy alternative fuel infrastructure for road transport as well as making the railway system safer and more interoperable. Safety and green credentials are essential elements of the present and future transport sector and CINEA helps to deliver these through its portfolio of EU-supported projects,” the Director of the European Climate, Infrastructure and Environment Executive Agency (CINEA), Dirk Beckers, said.
Three of the eight projects selected are focused on the improvement of rail interoperability through the support for the installation of the European Rail Traffic Management System (ERTMS). The retained CEF support allows for deployment of the system on 79 vehicles (91 on-board units). They include the retrofitting of 34 rail vehicles (34 on-board units) in Germany, retrofitting of 33 rail vehicles (33 on-board units) in Slovenia and upgrading of 12 rail vehicles (24 on-board units) in Italy.
The remaining five projects will deploy key alternative fuel infrastructure – electricity, hydrogen or liquefied natural gas for road vehicles. At this category, one project is related to rail transport and involves the procurement of hydrogen passenger trains in the Province of Groningen, in The Netherlands. The province has also received in March a EUR 25 million loan from the European Investment Bank. The project covers the acquisition of four hydrogen trains for the regional services on the Northern Lines network and the construction of a refuelling station. The Groningen authorities, which are committed to create a sustainable transport across the Groningen, intend to deploy the new trains by 2024.
“Whether installing electric charging points, developing hydrogen or LNG infrastructure, or modernising rail traffic management, each project is crucial in the European transition to a sustainable and smart mobility network. By combining European funding with that of national partners, the CEF – Transport – Blending Facility instrument ensures maximum impact and brings us closer to achieving our European Green Deal goals,” Adina Vălean, the European Commissioner for Transport said.