EU to Open CO2 Capture, Renewables Contest Tomorrow

The European Union said it will open a contest tomorrow for the first portion of about 5 billion euros ($7 billion) in subsidies to store carbon dioxide underground and promote renewable energy.

The EU will invite bids for “clean coal” and renewable aid that will come from the planned sale of as many as 300 million allowances to emit carbon dioxide under region’s cap-and-trade program.

The commission has appointed the European Investment Bank to select projects, convert the allowances and manage revenue. About 50 percent of project costs will be covered.

Cash will be disbursed to at least eight carbon capture and storage demonstration projects, and one project from each category of eligible clean energy technologies. Those include bio-energy plants, on- and offshore-wind farms, solar arrays, hydropower plants, marine energy systems and geothermal power plants.

Bidders are required to demonstrate that projects will be operational by the end of 2015 and all necessary permits should be in place.