18.1.2012 Govt launches UKH2Mobilty initiative
A ground breaking project to ensure the UK is well positioned for the commercial roll-out of hydrogen fuel cell electric vehicles has been launched, Business Minister Mark Prisk announced today.
The new initiative – UKH2Mobility – brings together three Government Departments and 13 industrial partners from the utility, gas, infrastructure and global car manufacturing sectors.
The group will evaluate the potential for hydrogen as a fuel for Ultra Low Carbon Vehicles in the UK before developing an action plan for an anticipated roll-out to consumers in 2014/15. It aims to:
* Analyse in detail the specific UK case for the introduction of hydrogen fuel cell electric vehicles as one of a number of solutions to decarbonise road transport;
* Review the investments required to commercialise the technology, including infrastructure; and
* Identify what is required to make the UK a leading global player in hydrogen fuel cell electric vehicle manufacturing, opening economic opportunities in the UK, through the creation of new jobs and boosting of local economies.
All of the partners have signed a Memorandum of Understanding to agree to share their knowledge and expertise.
Speaking at the launch of UKH2Mobility at the Royal Society Mark Prisk said, "The UK is proving itself to be a key early market for ultra-low emission vehicles with growing numbers of electric and plug-in hybrids appearing on our roads. The Government is supporting this market by investing £400 million to support the development, demonstration and deployment of low and ultra-low emission vehicles.
"Hydrogen fuel cell electric vehicles are increasingly being recognised as one of the viable options as we move to a lower carbon motoring future. They are highly efficient, can be fuelled in minutes, travel an equivalent range to a conventional combustion engine, and have zero tail-pipe emissions."
"UKH2Mobility will bring together industry expertise to establish the UK as a serious global player in the manufacture and use of hydrogen fuel cell electric vehicles and the supporting infrastructure."
Kevin Michaelis, Regional Vice President of Liquid Bulk/Generated Gases-Europe, Air Products, said, "This project brings together the leading hydrogen infrastructure providers, at the forefront of deployment worldwide, with the common goal of supporting the rollout of hydrogen transport across the United Kingdom.
"Working together with Government and leading car manufacturers we can support the creation of a hydrogen transport infrastructure that will dramatically cut harmful vehicle emissions and move the UK towards a zero carbon transport system."
Dr Henri Winand, Chief Executive of Intelligent Energy said, "The UK H2Mobility is a ground-breaking industry led task force. Its job is to roll its sleeves up and ensure that the UK is well positioned for the commercial roll-out of hydrogen fuel cell vehicles from 2014/15 as part of a balanced portfolio of drivetrains. Fuel cell vehicles, storage and refuelling technology are here today, they work! We now need to look at how we can make these elements, together with the hydrogen refuelling infrastructure, work most effectively to enable the UK to take full advantage of hydrogen as a transport fuel; stimulating inward investment, GDP growth and securing and creating new jobs".
UKH2Mobility will deliver its evaluation of the potential of hydrogen as a transport fuel by the end of 2012. If the results are positive, an action plan will be developed to work through the steps needed to get the UK ready to be one of the first markets for the global commercial roll out of Hydrogen Fuel Cell Electric Vehicles.
The UKH2Mobility launch event is taking place in London today, with several manufacturers present to display their progress in developing hydrogen fuel cell vehicles ready for the UK market. Manufacturers such as Vauxhall, Mercedes-Benz, Toyota and Honda, and many more, have been developing hydrogen powered vehicles for several years – this new initiative will accelerate such technologies towards the market place in the UK.
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