With only around 300 hydrogen-fueled cars currently driving around the UK, there certainly hasn't been the same kind of take up as electric vehicles. However, can a single form of alternative energy for vehicles provide the solution we need to replace petrol and diesel cars on our roads? Personally I think it cannot, whereby hydrogen remains an essential and large part of the solution for targeting net zero on our roads, especially while lithium batteries remain the preferred form of power for electric vehicles.
With the next budget tomorrow, it will be interesting to see what the UK Government is willing to offer to this developing technology. We are certainly seeing encouraging take-up of hydrogen solutions, such as fuel cells or even hydrogen IC engines within trains and larger road vehicles, such as buses from Equipmake and the Go-Ahead Group, and excavators from JCB. However, while the refuelling infrastructure around the country remains effectively non-existent, it seems difficult to see how hydrogen cars can become mainstream. Nevertheless, efforts to address this are underway, with localised hydrogen generation using solar or wind power and container-based electrolyer stacks already being tested and deployed in numerous locations. Perhaps the new generation of cars taking to our roads will soon include a fresh and exciting range of hydrogen vehicles.
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Government funding was likely if the technology is proven and the UK can drive innovation, with many hoping for updated guidance in the coming Autumn Statement, on November 22.
The Government intends to publish a Zero Emission HGV Infrastructure Strategy in early 2024 to outline the "roles and responsibilities" of the industry in the deployment of the relevant network
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