Clean fuel specialist Element 2 is holding talks with local authorities and other key parties as it steps up its search for suitable sites to build a network of ‘city hydrogen hubs’.
Over the next decade the North Yorkshire-based company wants to install 2,000 H2 pumps across the UK, including 300 in Scotland.Earlier this month it was announced that it had formed a strategic partnership with H2 Green, a subsidiary of Getech Group.
Last week it signed a memorandum of understanding with energy solutions company BayoTech which will invest significant capital to develop plants and create jobs.
Due to its volume, hydrogen fuel is not well-suited to short-distance passenger vehicles but the renewable energy source is ideal for vehicles above 3.5 tons, such as lorries, buses and coaches, and vehicles requiring high availability such as gritters and emergency vehicles.
Element 2, backed by venture capital, is led by serial entrepreneur and former European Space Agency engineer Tim Harper, and fuel cells and hydrogen technology expert Brendan Bilton.
Mr Harper said: “Working with technology developers, suppliers, consultants and vehicle manufacturers, and by forging close ties to councils, transport operators and fleet owners, we will identify and develop refuelling sites, and support vehicle conversions to accelerate net zero strategies.
“Scotland has been an early adopter of hydrogen in transport, with more than £40 million invested or earmarked in the last five years for ground-breaking hydrogen transport projects.
“Element 2 can play an important role in supporting the Scottish Government’s Hydrogen Policy Statement objective of making hydrogen a key element of Scotland’s decarbonisation plans.”
Element 2’s strategy includes leasing land, negotiating profit share agreements and installing proven technologies to establish a hydrogen refuelling infrastructure which will help decarbonise Britain’s transport sector and fast track the UK’s ambition of achieving net zero carbon.
Dr Andrew Hagan, the company’s chief development officer, added: “We are currently negotiating with local authorities and other partners to locate the best land and locations for our refuelling stations and to build this essential infrastructure which will be a vital component in fuelling the UK transport sector.
“Businesses want to use hydrogen fuel but the infrastructure doesn’t yet exist or it is in its infancy. Element 2 will satisfy this demand using green hydrogen wherever possible, and develop a mature network to supply hydrogen across the UK.”
In February, the company appointed the former Liberal Democrat leader and former chief economist for Shell, Sir Vince Cable, as a non-executive director.