1.5 million hydrogen-powered cars on UK roads by 2030

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More than 1.5 million hydrogen-fuelled cars could be on UK roads by 2030, according to a new study.

The forecast was made in an interim report commissioned to assess the benefits of hydrogen fuel cell electric vehicles (FCEVs) and help position the UK for their commercial roll-out.

The UKH2Mobility project – which brings together businesses from the automotive, energy, infrastructure and retail sectors with government – put the report together; the study provides a ‘roadmap’ for the introduction of vehicles and hydrogen refuelling infrastructure in the UK.

Akihito Tanke, vice president, research and development, Toyota Motor Europe, said hydrogen fuel cell technology represented a major advance in securing sustainable mobility.

“As manufacturers reach the point of bringing the first FCEVs to market, it is important that all interested parties work together to ensure their benefits can be appreciated and realised through co-ordinated dialogue between industry partners and government bodies.

“UKH2Mobility’s Phase 1 findings provide valuable resources and intelligence to help us secure these advantages and we look forward to participating in Phase 2 to further confirm the potential of hydrogen as a low carbon fuel in the UK.”

Business minister Michael Fallon said the transition to ultra-low emission vehicles had already begun and it had the potential to create "really significant new economic opportunities" for the UK, to diversify national energy supply and to decarbonise road transport.

“The findings demonstrate that hydrogen fuel cell electric vehicles can make a significant contribution to this.

“Successful commercialisation of the technology will require government to work in true partnership with industry.

“Our international rivals are looking to steal a march in this area and so UKH2Mobility recognises the importance of prompt action to ensure the potential benefits are realised by businesses and consumers in the UK," he added.