Flagship EU hydrogen project reaches key milestone, as 8-million km achieved
The flagship EU project Hydrogen Mobility Europe (H2ME) reaches a key milestone, with hydrogen-powered vehicles - including vans - travelling more than eight-million kilometres to date.
It demonstrates vital importance of hydrogen to achieving zero-emission mobility, with progress to be discussed at the Hydrogen for Clean Transport Conference.
The pan-European project has now deployed almost 500 hydrogen-powered fuel cell electric vehicles (FCEVs) and 30 hydrogen refuelling stations (HRS) across the UK, Germany, France, Scandinavia, and other European countries.
In total, the project will deploy 49 HRS and 1,400 hydrogen fuel cell cars and vans by 2022.
Vehicles have now travelled over 8m km since the project began in 2015, with over 5m of these in 2018.
“France will have nearly 2,000 trucks and more than 20,000 light commercial vehicles powered by hydrogen by 2028, with hydrogen technology recognised as a Strategic Value Chain within Europe,” says Fabio Ferrari, CEO of Symbio – French Coalition Lead.
Interest in the European hydrogen fuel cell market isn’t limited to European providers, with Arizona, USA-based Nikola Motor Company announcing a truck for European markets in November 2018.
Reservations for the Nikola Tre (meaning ‘three’ in Norwegian) are now open at www.nikolamotor.com/tre.
European testing is projected to begin in Norway around 2020. Nikola is also in the preliminary planning stages to identify the location for its European manufacturing facility.
Fuel for heavy-duty applications
Ben Madden, Director at UK-based Element Energy – Project Lead and Coordinator says: “Today, we can already see an acceleration of the use of hydrogen as a fuel in heavy-duty and high demand applications, such as taxis, delivery vehicles and trucks.”
“Governments at a national and local level are putting in place concrete targets to reduce emissions and accelerate the switch to zero-emission mobility.
“The H2ME project demonstrates that hydrogen can play a central role in this shift, ensuring that all road users have the option to participate in the transition, thanks to its ability to provide fast refuelling and long range.”
Findings and conclusions from H2ME will be shared at the Hydrogen for Clean Transport mid-term conference, in Hamburg on 25 October 2019.
Hamburg is the perfect location for the event as it has taken a strategic approach to adopting hydrogen, particularly in combination with renewable energies, launching a wide range of projects with ongoing local political support.
The results generated by the project are shared with industry, politicians, and the wider public to support the wider adoption of hydrogen mobility.
As part of this, the Hydrogen for Clean Transport conference will showcase the advances made by hydrogen technology in the transport sector and discuss the remaining challenges working towards widespread commercialisation.
To celebrate the expanding network of stations in Europe, hydrogen-powered vehicles will be driving to the event from across Europe, arriving in Hamburg the day before the conference begins.
For more details and to register for the event visit https://h2me.eu/events/hydrogen-for-clean-transport/
The findings come as many countries are legislating to ban the sale of internal combustion engine vehicles – for example, Norway by 2025, the Netherlands from 2030, and the UK and France by 2040.
Hydrogen has key advantages as a fuel. These include reducing tailpipe emissions to zero and improving air quality, while being easily available, simple to store, suitable for heavy-duty applications and zero-emission when it is generated from renewable sources.
Most importantly for individuals or fleets with high demand and responsive operations, such as taxis or emergency response services, it provides the longest range and fastest refuelling of zero-emission vehicles.
The H2ME initiative aims to support the commercialisation of fuel cell and hydrogen technologies in Europe.
As well as creating the world’s largest network of HRS, it is sharing best practice and standards between the 43 partners and helping develop attractive ownership models in use cases such as taxis, captive fleets, and in cities with strict environmental targets.
Graham Cooley, CEO of ITM power – UK Coalition Lead, said, “The UK government is now preparing to end its contribution to global warming within 30 years by setting an ambitious new target to reduce its greenhouse gas emissions to zero by 2050.
“The importance of hydrogen in enabling the UK to meet this target was highlighted in the government report, that says: ‘Low-carbon hydrogen moves from being a useful option to a key enabler. Updates to policy alongside adoption of our recommended target should reflect that’, reinforcing the contribution H2ME can make moving forward.”
Dirk Schaap, Coordinator for hydrogen at the Ministry of Infrastructure and Watermanagement, The Netherlands – Dutch Coalition Lead, says: “The private sector is planning for investments, for example, earlier this year, plans for a €2.8bn investment in the large-scale application of sustainably generated hydrogen in the Northern Netherlands were announced.
“The Dutch government and Dutch companies are increasingly looking at hydrogen for its potential in supporting the energy transition while creating economic opportunities.”
Adds Fabio Ferrari, CEO of Symbio – French Coalition Lead, said, “The H2ME initiative is definitely a first step towards mass market adoption, as only a huge growth in volumes and capacity will allow reduction in the price of the hydrogen stack and components to meet worldwide market expectations.”
This €170m demonstration project is co-funded with €67m from the Fuel Cells and Hydrogen Joint Undertaking (FCH JU), a public-private partnership supporting fuel cell and hydrogen energy technologies in Europe.
- Element Energy (project lead)
- Air Liquide
- AREVA H2GEN
- City of Copenhagen (Kobenhavns Kommune)
- Communauté d’Agglomération Sarreguemines Confluence
- Daimler AG
- Danish Hydrogen Fuel
- H2 Mobility Deutschland
- Hydrogen Denmark (Brintbranchen)
- Hydrogene de France
- Icelandic New Energy Ltd
- Intelligent Energy
- Islenska Vetnisfelagid (H2 Iceland)
- ITM Power
- Linde AG
- McPhy Energy
- Nel Hydrogen
- Netherlands Ministry of Infrastructure and Water Management (Ministerie Van Infrastructuur en Waterstaat)
- OPEN ENERGI
- Renault Trucks
- The University of Manchester
Find out more: Project website here