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Brief description:

The New Entrants Reserve fund, more commonly known as NER 300, was launched by the European Commission in 2008. It is intended to provide financial support for the development of innovative low-carbon technologies, at commercial scale, across the European Union.

Funding derives from the sale of 300 million allowances (or rights to emit one tonne of CO2) in the New Entrants’ Reserve of the European Emissions Trading Scheme. Submitted projects undergo rigorous scrutiny by the European Investment Bank to assess their viability. Member states must then declare their support for national projects which are shortlisted by the EC.

The first call of funding – fed by the sale of 200 million allowances – ended in December 2012 with the decision to award 23 renewables projects a share of €1.2 billion, but no CCS projects were successful. The first batch of proposals had been whittled down to 13 CCS projects and 65 renewables projects. A drop in carbon pricing meant the scheme did not meet original estimates of available funding – expected to raise in the region of €4.5 billion.

As of early 2013, NER300 has moved to the second call for proposals. If similar funding criteria are met, the next batch of projects stand to win a share of funds from the sale of the remaining 100 million allowances. The €275 million envisaged for CCS projects in the first call remains available to fund projects under the second phase.

Keep up-to-date with NER300 developments and criteria at and the EC's NER300 website.