The UK Hydrogen and Fuel Cell Association (UK HFCA) was delighted to be invited to submit Oral Evidence to the Energy and Climate Change Committee following our response to the “Low Carbon Innovation” inquiry.
Key messages from the UK HFCA to the Committee included:
- Our members have invested £400 million over recent years to grow capability and jobs, and move the sector forward.
- The UK has a number of world leading hydrogen and fuel cell companies operating in the global market. Government support is needed now to make the UK an attractive place to manufacture and thus grow and retain current capability.
- Government support for low carbon innovation is not broad, long term or flexible enough to support the diverse opportunities, encompassing transport, power (at varying scales) and heat, as well as grid balancing, in our sector. It has an important role in de-risking new technologies, such as hydrogen and fuel cells.
- Furthermore, the Government’s approach to low carbon innovation is not structured to facilitate the introduction of new technologies (such as hydrogen and fuel cells which, although they can deliver low or – with renewables – zero carbon energy, are not classified as renewable) that do not fit “neatly” into existing policy schemes.
- The UK could learn from the experience of Germany, which has established a strategic alliance to speed up the process of market preparation of products based on this technology. The total budget for the 10 year period to 2016 amounts to € 1.4 billion. A similarly long term, consistent and robust framework embracing the range of opportunities would pay dividends across a range of policy objectives in the UK.
Dennis Hayter, Chair of UK HFCA said: ‘We were pleased to be able to contribute to the Committee’s thinking, and look forward to further engagement with the Committee as a whole and individual members, alongside our wider campaigning activity for a pan-application support mechanism for fuel cells and hydrogen.’