EC to pour EUR 1bn into cross-border energy infrastructure projects

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January 31 (Renewables Now) - The European Commission (EC) plans to provide EUR 1.04 billion (USD 1.16bn) in financial aid to back cross-border energy infrastructure projects that will support the union’s Green Deal sustainability arrangement.

Countries within the EU have approved the Commission’s proposal to source funding from the Connecting Europe Facility (CEF). Final approval is expected to be given in the coming weeks, the EC said last week.

The largest portion of the grant funding is set to be allocated for the construction of a power interconnection line that will link Cyprus, Greece and Israel. The EuroAsia interconnector will receive EUR 657 million of the total amount. The project will create an energy bridge between Asia and Europe via a 1,208-km direct current (DC) undersea cable route that will be able to accommodate 1,000 MW of capacity, with the possibility to reach 2,000 MW. The networks of Cyprus and Greece will be linked through 898 km of subsea cables.

Construction of the EuroAsia interconnector is slated to begin this year and completion is targeted at end-2025. The facility will be commissioned in the first half of 2026.

The second phase of a synchronisation project that will back the integration of the Baltic States’ electricity system with other European networks will receive EUR 170 million. The specific scheme, called the Baltic Synchronisation Project Phase II, envisages grid enhancement in Poland and upgrading the transmission infrastructure in Lithuania, Latvia and Estonia.

Some EUR 127 million in aid has been earmarked for the Aurora line – a power transmission link between Sweden and Finland that is planned to facilitate the integration of more renewable capacity. The 400 kV AC connection line is due to be completed in 2025.

According to the EC’s proposal, EUR 78 million will be set aside to increase the capacity of a gas storage facility in Bulgaria, which will improve the security of supply in South-East Europe, while EUR 4 million will be granted for the second phase of a study aiming to expand the transport and temporary storage capacity of carbon dioxide (CO2) in Norway.

(EUR 1.0 = USD 1.115)

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Veselina Petrova is one of Renewables Now's most experienced green energy writers. For several years she has been keeping track of game-changing events both large and small projects and across the globe.

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