Advancing Hydrogen – Competition 2

The Advancing Hydrogen program is the second round of funding available under the Hydrogen Centre of Excellence.

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Program at a Glance

Program Status: Active
Strategic Initiative: Hydrogen Centre of Excellence
Business Area: Clean Technology
Priority Area(s): Funding projects to further develop Alberta's hydrogen economy.


Program Status: Active
Alberta-based: Yes
Organization Type: Academic Institutions & Researchers
Government or Public Entity
Individual or Sole Proprietor
Multi-National Enterprise
Post-Secondary Students
Small to Medium Enterprise


Leveraging Alberta’s existing natural resources and human capacity to integrate hydrogen into the energy system is a critical component of innovation in the province.

The Advancing Hydrogen — Competition 2 program is the second round of funding available under the Hydrogen Centre of Excellence and is partnered with Natural Resources Canada’s (NRCan’s) Office of Energy Research and Development and Emissions Reduction Alberta (ERA) through its Accelerating Hydrogen competition. The Centre was announced on April 26, 2022, receiving $50 million in funding from the Government of Alberta as an important delivery mechanism for the policy pillars outlined in the Alberta Hydrogen Roadmap.

Funded projects will activate the Centre’s objectives of:

  • Developing and deploying hydrogen-focused technologies;
  • Strengthening Alberta’s environmental, social, and corporate governance credentials while spurring economic growth;
  • Building a sustainable and self-sufficient clean hydrogen economy in Alberta; and
  • Increasing Alberta’s technology strength in clean hydrogen technology deployment.

Alberta’s Hydrogen Roadmap

The program is directed towards developing projects that support goals outlined in Alberta’s Hydrogen Roadmap following the identification of hydrogen as an emerging market in the Natural Gas Vision and Strategy.

Funding aims to achieve the integration of clean hydrogen into Alberta’s domestic energy system for use in mobility, heat, power generation, and renewable energy storage, and industrial applications, in addition to establishing the province as a major global supplier in clean energy exports. Projects that contribute towards the Hydrogen Roadmap outcomes and targets will be considered within the scope of this competition.

The successful projects will accelerate the adoption of hydrogen into the economy and focus on filling gaps which have been identified throughout the innovation process, from production to end use. They will contribute to growing Alberta’s green economy, supporting economic diversification, and reducing GHG emissions.

Other Funding Opportunities

Alberta Innovates, Emissions Reduction Alberta and Natural Resources Canada are trusted partners with the Natural Gas Innovation Fund (NGIF). NGIF has an active call for proposals for its Global Cleantech Challenge – Energy Transformation through Cleantech Innovation and is accepting proposals through its website linked here. Note that the proposal deadline is November 1, 2023 (3:00 PM EDT). Note also that the NGIF proposal competition is separate from the HCOE and ERA competition.

Informational Webinar

An informational webinar, hosted by ERA Executive Director of Technology and Innovation Chris Owttrim and Director of Clean Technology in Clean Resources at Alberta Innovates David Van Den Assem, for potential applicants was held on August 16, 2023, from 10:00 AM to 11:00 AM MDT. View the webinar here and accompanying presentation slides here.


Projects that meet the program eligibility criteria will be considered for funding; the full eligibility criteria can be found in the program guide. Up to $20 million is available over 24 months for technology readiness levels 3-6 through the HCOE’s “Advancing Hydrogen — Competition 2”, and up to $25 million is available for technology readiness levels 7-9 through ERA’s “Accelerating Hydrogen Scale-up and Deployment Competition”. Funding requests for TRL 3-6 can be up to, but not exceed, $2 million. Funding Requests for TRL 7-9 can be up to, but not exceed, $5 million. Additional funding may be available to bring the combined Competitions total to $50M or more.

Proposed projects should have a clear and direct pathway to creating tangible impacts in Alberta. Projects should be able to show direct measurable benefits, or to quantify indirect benefits, in at least one of the following areas:

  • Hydrogen production;
  • Transmission/transportation/dispensing;
  • Storage (mobile, stationary, and subsurface);
  • End use (heating, mobility, power, industrial processes); and
  • Export.

How To Apply

Submissions to both the HCOE Advancing Hydrogen — Competition 2 and the ERA Accelerating Hydrogen Scale-up and Deployment Competitions will be evaluated using a two-stage application process. Proposals for Stage 1 should be submitted electronically using the Intake form managed via the SmartSimple online intake system.

Proponents will self-select their preferred funding program based on their starting Technology Readiness Levels (TRL 3-6 or TRL 7-9). Note that Alberta Innovates, Natural Resources Canada and Emissions Reduction Alberta at their sole discretion, will triage applications into appropriate Competitions at two key decision points: following initial submission of expression of interest proposals, and at shortlisting for invitation to full proposal stage.

Evaluation Process

For eligibility criteria, consult the program guide. To discuss eligibility for this program or for specific questions regarding this program and guide, consult the contact(s) listed below.

For specific questions regarding technical issues with proposal submissions using the SmartSimple online system, please contact:

Support Resources

Note: NRCan will have a separate investment agreement and may have additional reporting requirements.


David Van Den Assem, B.Sc., MEDes, MBA, LEED Green Associate

Director, Clean Technology

Emissions Reduction Alberta

Closed Intakes

HCOE Advancing Hydrogen Competition 2 and Emissions Reduction Alberta Accelerating Hydrogen

Building a hydrogen economy while leveraging Alberta’s existing natural resources and human capacity in the hydrogen economy is a critical component of innovation in the province.


Registration closed: September 26, 2023 12:00 am

Funded Projects

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