Hydrogen partnerships working in 2020

A new EU hydrogen fuel partnership has been announced in March 2020, namely the ‘Clean Hydrogen Alliance’. It is meant to build on existing efforts and expand further into H2. A European Commission statement read: “The Alliance will build on existing work to identify technology needs, investment opportunities and regulatory barriers and enablers. ‘’ 

The statement referred to a new EU hydrogen fuel partnership as a ‘new industrial strategy for Europe’.  

In the area of broadening the use of hydrogen, the Chair of Hydrogen Ireland, Dr James Carton, said: “Hydrogen Ireland commits to provide data on policies, incentives and regulations that impact the deployment of hydrogen technologies in Ireland to  Hydrogen Europe and the fuel cells and hydrogen observatory.” 

The European Clean Hydrogen Alliance initiative could materialize this summer. The proposed alliance will be modelled on the European Battery Alliance which brought together more than 200 companies, national governments and research organisations. 

Dr James Carton, Chair of Hydrogen Ireland

Hydrogen Transport debate develops further

Hydrogen Ireland welcomes more positive news regarding the use of hydrogen fuelled buses. The new owner of Wrightbus is hoping to get £500m from the British Government as he plans to focus on hydrogen powered buses.

The Ballymena-based bus manufacturing company was saved by Jo Bamford last year after it entered administration and 1,400 jobs were lost.

Speaking to The Sunday Telegraph, Mr Jo Bamford, whose family owns the £3.5bn JCB empire, outlined his plans to create a zero emissions bus.

Mr Bamford wants £500m to get his dream up and running. He explained that £200m would be spent on infrastructure and a further £300m would be spent on subsidising hydrogen buses.

Around 3,500 of those buses would be made £100,000 cheaper, making them a similar price to diesel alternatives.

Prime Minister Boris Johnson recently announced a £5bn programme to invest in England’s bus network and Mr Bamford is desperate for Wrightbus to be involved.

“If you go and spend £5bn on zero-emission buses and they are all battery buses, most of which come from China. I am not sure that is the best for British industry,” he said. “My point to the British Government: we haven’t got an advantage in batteries. We have got an opportunity with hydrogen to claim that space.”

Hydrogen Ireland welcome investment in hydrogen infrastructure and with HI being part of the Hydrogen Europe network we will make our voice heard in 2020 and beyond. We are disappointed that this weeks Hydrogen and Fuel Cells for Heavy Duty Transport Conference in Brussels (March 25-26, 2020) has been cancelled due to the ongoing Covid-19 crisis.

The Energy debate is bigger news than ever before

The key speaker at the Energy Institute NI Annual dinner on March 5th 2020 was Ms Jan Reid, Senior Manager, Low Carbon at Scottish Enterprise. Key industry figures listened to her address on marine energy with interest. The energy question is becoming more mainstream and more newsworthy all the time. In a recent opinion piece in the Irish News daily newspaper the question of an energy strategy was discussed. http://www.irishnews.com/business/2020/03/03/news/a-new-energy-strategy-is-everyone-s-business-1856530/ Hydrogen Ireland board members are currently contributing to the ongoing energy strategy debate offering valued opinions to government.

The key speaker at the recent Energy Institute Northern Ireland branch annual dinner Ms Jan Reid is pictured alongside Ms Clare Mc Allister, Chair of the Energy Institute NI branch.

HI board attend Energy Institute (NI) 59th Annual dinner

Hydrogen Ireland board members and GenComm European partners attended the Energy Institute (NI) annual dinner on March 5th. 

The Northern Ireland branch of the Energy Institute (EI) held their 59th annual dinner on Thursday March 5th 2020 in Belfast. The event held at the Crowne Plaza at Shaws Bridge in Belfast was attended by Hydrogen Ireland board members , members of the Belfast Met GenComm team and by individual GenComm partners from across Europe. 

The Energy Institute is a  not-for-profit chartered professional membership body which brings together expertise to tackle urgent global challenges. The EI respond to the climate emergency while meeting the energy needs of the world’s growing population and making calls for energy to be better understood, managed and valued. This is at the heart of the social purpose of the Energy Institute. 

A  collaborative space for industry, academia and policy makers, the Energy Institute delivers standards, guidance, training and qualifications that raise the bar in operations in almost all areas of the energy system: upstream and downstream oil and gas, onshore and offshore wind power, fugitive methane reduction, battery storage, hydrogen, CCUS and integrated networks. 

The black tie annual dinner featured a wine reception and after dinner entertainment. This key date in the energy sector calendar in Northern Ireland was open to EI members and non members. On the night the key speaker was Ms Jan Reid, Senior Manager, Low Carbon at Scottish Enterprise. Ms Reid has worked in economic development for over 25 years. Her work is now focused on supporting the growing industries and opportunities of low carbon, especially water and wastewater and low carbon heat and energy efficiency.  

Entertainment on the evening included a performance from the Fortwilliam Musical Society , a group, founded in 1977. The main society perform a week of concerts in November each year in the Courtyard Theatre, Ballyearl. These concerts are reprised on a number of occasions throughout the rest of the season, (September to May), often as fundraising events for local churches, clubs and societies.. The society also perform a week in the Theatre at the Mill usually in March. 

Mr Paul Mc Cormack, the GenComm Programme Manager  made a presentation  at the event to Energia Energy Services Manager, Mark Welsh to congratulate him on his working life in the energy sector. The attendance on the night also included Meabh Cormacain, Energy Adviser at the Strategic Investment Board, Micheal Scott, Managing Director, Firmus Energy, Jamie Delargy, former UTV business editor, Neil Hewitt, Univeristy of Ulster, Professor of Energy and Terry Waugh, Chief Executive of Action Renewables. 

HI attend Energy Strategy Workshop

Hydrogen Ireland board member Mark Welsh , attended the Department For the Economy Energy Strategy transport workshop in the Mellon Country Inn in Omagh, Co Tyrone on February 26 2020. 

Former UTV Business Editor Jamie Delargy opened the workshop. Among the topics discussed were: Setting the Scene-Climate Change,  Michael Mc Callion-DAERA, (Department of Agriculture, Environment and Rural Affairs) an introduction to the DFE Call for Evidence process, from the DFE Energy Strategy team , a Call for Evidence-Transport , Claire Cockerill, DFI. There was a table discussion on the call for evidence questions. A summary of the discussion and the next steps was also considered. 

Among the questions posed from the event were, what would be an appropriate pathway to decarbonised energy for transport to 2050 ?, 

What role should active travel have in the decarbonisation of the transport sector and what should government do to support this ? 

What energy infrastructure is needed to facilitate the uptake of electric vehicles in line with UK Government’s road ‘Road to Zero’ targets ? 

How will transport integrate with other energy uses, ie: homes with solar generation, battery storage, EV charging and what can government do to optimise the opportunities represented by this integration ? 

To what extent can alternative low carbon transport fuels contribute to the decarbonisation of the transport sector ? 

Mark Welsh, Energia Energy Services Manager and HI Board member attends the DFE Energy Strategy Transport Workshop

Research Group meeting in Cork attended by Hydrogen Ireland

The Chairs of GenComm outputs Hydrogen Ireland and the Community Hydrogen Forum both attended a hydrogen research meeting in Cork on February 19. Academics were in attendance to discuss the hydrogen question in Ireland in 2020. Those attending included researchers from UCC Interdisciplinary Institute which has 400 researchers who address the sustainability challenges of climate action, circular economy and the healthy environment. The Ryan Institute, NUIG, who do research into sustainability also had attendees.

Do you have any data/research to help inform and reduce the carbon intensity of our transport energy in order to achieve net zero carbon by 2050 ? 

The Chair of Hydrogen Ireland , Dr James Carton and the Chair of the Community Hydrogen Forum, Dr Rory Monaghan both attended the hydrogen research group meeting in Cork on February 19.

Hydrogen Ireland board members speaking at key events in Dublin and Belfast

Hydrogen Ireland stakeholder work – Feb 17-21, 2020 

It’s been a busy week for the Hydrogen Ireland team. Firstly on the evening of Tuesday 18 February Mark Welsh, from  GenComm partner Energia spoke at ‘The Mac’ in Belfast’s Cathedral quarter at a Northern Ireland Science Festival event called ‘The Future of Mobility’.  

In an attempt to halt climate change and improve air quality there is a push towards low carbon vehicles being ubiquitious on our roads, sea and air in tandem, work is accelerating on fully autonomous vehicles.  Mark spoke as part of a panel of experts from business and academia which also included David Tyler, Commercial Director, Artemis Technologies, and Andrew Woods, CEO of Catagen. Lorraine Acheson, Innovate UK Manager for Northern Ireland was the Chair of the event.  The event was part of the Innovate UK Grand Challenges series which focuses on the global trends which will transform our futures.  There is now in 2020 an upheaval in our mobility, energy and infrastructure systems.  A public announcement on January 29, 2020 by Translink, the Energia Group and Wrightbus with support from the Department for Infrastructure and the Office for Low Emission Vehicles (OLEV) paved the way for Belfast’s first ever hydrogen powered double decker buses.  

Meanwhile on Thursday February 20, 2020, Dr Rory Monaghan , from GenComm partner, NUIG was a speaker at the Irish Renewable Energy Summit 2020 in Croke Park, Dublin. Dr Monaghan is also the Chair of the Community Hydrogen Forum, (CH2F) a vital output of the GenComm project.  The 2020 Irish Renewable Energy Summitt looked at where Ireland is in terms of delivering renewable energy to meet its climate commitments.  The summit brought together key stakeholders from across the energy sector to discuss how the contribution from renewable energy can be maximized and implemented most effectively. 

Among the key themes covered at the Dublin event were the climate action plan and renewable energy policy, the next phase of onshore wind development, decarbonizing the gas network with biomethane and the electrification of transport.  

At a session on bioenergy chaired by Marie Donnelly from Renewable Energy Ireland, Dr Monaghan spoke on the topic, ‘Renewable Hydrogen is ready for take off’.  Among the other speakers was William Walsh, Chief Executive of the Sustainable Energy Authority of Ireland. Mr Walsh spoke on the topic, ‘Projections to 2030-Renewable Energy Outlook’.  

Hydrogen Ireland board members attend Translink hydrogen double decker bus project Belfast launch

Translink have signed a contract with GenComm partner Energia for the supply of renewably sourced hydrogen from an on shore Co Antrim windfarm and a contract with Wrightbus who will supply three new sustainable fuel cell electric double decker buses powered by Hydrogen. The launch event on January 29, 2020 was attended by the Chair of Hydrogen Ireland, Dr James Carton and by Hydrogen Ireland board members, Mark Welsh, Neil Morrow, Paul Mc Cormack and Ian Williamson. Hydrogen Ireland board member and Energia Group Energy Services Manager Mark Welsh welcomed the news saying: “We are delighted to partner with Translink on this renewable hydrogen project which brings together both public and private sector investment and innovation. The project will also be an important enabler for the development of the skills and capabilities of local companies, such as Wrightbus, so that export opportunities in the global hydrogen economy can be realised.”

Hydrogen Ireland Chair Dr James Carton and Hydrogen Ireland board members pictured at the January 29 , 2020 Translink media launch of Belfasts new double decker hydrogen buses
Pictured at the Translink media launch announcing news of Belfasts first ever hydrogen powered double decker buses are from left Mark Welsh, Energia Energy Services Manager, Nichola Mallon, Minister for Infrastructure, (NI) and Paul Mc Cormack, GenComm Programme Manager

New role for Hydrogen Ireland Chair Dr James Carton

Dr James Carton, Chair of Hydrogen Ireland has been appointed as Hydrogen Taskforce Expert to the United Nations Economic Commission For Europe (UN-ECE).

Hydrogen Ireland Board Member writes for Renewable Energy magazine

Dr Rory Monaghan, NUIG

Hydrogen Ireland Board member Dr Rory Monaghan, NUIG has written an article for Renewable Energy Magazine. Dr Monaghan provides an account of how hydrogen can enable the connection of Ireland’s offshore renewable potential with the countrys energy system. The creation of Hydrogen Ireland is mentioned in the article. https://www.energyireland.ie/renewable-hydrogen-is-ready-for-take-off-will-ireland-be-onboard/

Hydrogen Ireland Presentation at the Belfast Met Hydrogen and Low Emissions Alternative Fuels Seminar

Energia Energy Services Manager Mark Welsh explained at the Belfast Met Hydrogen seminar on November 28 2019 how Hydrogen Ireland will be taking up a position within Hydrogen Europe and how a hydrogen infrastructure is growing. https://www.nweurope.eu/media/8587/mark-welsh-energia-presentation.pptx

Hydrogen Ireland Board Member Mark Welsh speaking at the Belfast Met Hydrogen and Low Emissions Alternative Fuels Seminar on November 28, 2019

Hydrogen Mobility Ireland Strategy Paper ready for discussion

The document presents a detailed analysis across items such as – cost of ownership, comparison with other technologies, different hydrogen production scenarios, refuelling station approach, breakdown of investment needs and government support required.

The full report and a narrative summary may be accessed here…



Pictured at the launch of the Hydrogen Mobility Ireland Strategy paper are from left Dr James Carton, Chair of Hydrogen Ireland, David Strain, Department For Infrastructure, NI, Paul Mc Cormack, GenComm Programme Manager and Mark Welsh, Energia Energy Services Manager.

Dr James Carton to speak at Low Emissions Seminar

The Chair of Hydrogen Ireland Dr James Carton will be speaking at a Hydrogen and Low Emissions Fuels Seminar on November 28 , 2019 at Belfast Met’s E3 Campus, Springfield Road, Belfast, BT12 7DU.

The workshop will run from 09.00-13.45 GMT and will discuss the outputs of the  GenComm  project, safety training, environmental issues and the clean transport agenda. You will also hear about Belfast’s first hydrogen double deck bus and how the new 350 Bar hydrogen refuelling works.

You will also hear from a panel of technical leads in the NI hydrogen journey.

A Hydrogen Roadmap for Irish Transport 2020-2030 –  Hydrogen Mobility Ireland    

Hydrogen Ireland Association and a group of leading industrial players, and public sector bodies have come together to launch a coordinated strategy report for the deployment of hydrogen mobility in Ireland. The transport sector is currently the second highest contributor to greenhouse gas emissions in Ireland. The use of hydrogen as a fuel for cars and heavy-duty vehicles can enable zero emissions transport.

We are reaching a consensus globally that renewables have a big role to play in reducing emissions and that electrification and storage can work hand in hand. Hydrogen is versatile, and is becoming very cost effective to produce from renewables. There are multiple projects across Europe, US and Asia that are scaling hydrogen production technology, allowing hydrogen to replace fossil fuels in steel & fertiliser industries, being shipped from Australia to Japan and enabling an unprecedented amount of interest for hydrogen transport; in fuel cell buses, cars, trains and trucks. These vehicles are difficult to decarbonise at scale other than using hydrogen.

In Ireland, currently about 35% of our electricity is from renewable wind. Ireland’s Climate Action Plan has aimed to reach 70% renewables by 2030, ban the sale of new petrol & diesel vehicles and have a million electric vehicles on the roads. Hydrogen in transport can support renewable energy, it can start small and scaleup fast to help enable Ireland’s Climate Action Plan to happen, making a real impact to reduce emissions in transport by 2030, for our climate & for our health.

“We see hydrogen playing a role in achieving Ireland’s climate targets in Transport, Heating, Energy & Storage. Our aim is to connect hydrogen with all sectors of energy and society, creating a new clean, zero-emission economy” Dr James Carton, Hydrogen Ireland Association.

Key Report Findings:

By 2030 the Hydrogen Mobility Ireland Strategy can Deliver many Benefits for Ireland, including:
 – Hydrogen as a mass market fully zero carbon fuel

 – Cost competitive clean transport

 – No local pollutant emissions

 – A solution for heavy use transport

 – Direct benefits for the Irish economy

 – Catalysing other hydrogen energy applications

 – Hydrogen from renewable energy

 – Hydrogen Fuel cell vehicles to include 30 Buses, 50 cars & 10 Trucks on Irish roads by 2023 

Please download the full public report HERE http://hydrogenireland.org/wp-content/uploads/2019/10/HMI_report_final_Oct3rd2019-2.pdf and Summary report HERE   http://hydrogenireland.org/wp-content/uploads/2019/10/HMI_narrative_summary_final_Oct3rd2019.pdf

Hydrogen Mobility Ireland members and Stakeholders

The launch of Hydrogen Ireland at Belfast City Hall , March 2019

Picture: Michael Cooper
Picture: Michael Cooper
Picture: Michael Cooper
Picture: Michael Cooper
Picture: Michael Cooper
Picture: Michael Cooper
Picture: Michael Cooper
Picture: Michael Cooper
Picture: Michael Cooper
Picture: Michael Cooper
Picture: Michael Cooper
Picture: Michael Cooper
Picture: Michael Cooper
Picture: Michael Cooper


H2 View interview Hydrogen Ireland Co Founder Dr James Carton

H2 view Senior Journalist Joanna Sampson has interviewed Dr James Carton for the H2 View website. James has explained the key aims of Hydrogen Ireland and the special relationship with hydrogen that Ireland has.

Northern Ireland Hydrogen Transport Initiative gets go ahead

This NI hydrogen transport initiative aims to install one hydrogen fuelling station and provide three hydrogen buses as a result. The project is led by GenComm partner Energia. Check the details here  https://ee.ricardo.com/htpgrants

HUGE (Hydrogen Utilisation and Green Energy) project launch

The Huge project has been launched in Galway. GenComm Programme Manager Paul Mc Cormack was among the speakers at the launch https://actionrenewables.co.uk/news-events/post.php?s=new-eu-project-huge-to-launch-next-month