Six cities and regions in Europe and Canada are joining forces to buy hydrogen-powered buses. The partners decided to proceed with this international alliance following the successful completion of the major EU-assisted hydrogen- and fuel-cell bus project CUTE (Clean Urban Transport for Europe). (Earlier post.)
Representatives of the partners signed a Memorandum of Understanding on purchasing the hydrogen-powered buses at the meeting of the Third General Assembly of the Europe Hydrogen and Fuel Cell Technology Platform (HFP) in Brussels. The cooperating cities and regions are: Amsterdam, Barcelona, Berlin, British Columbia Province, Hamburg and London.
The European Commission voiced full support for the initiative as sending a strong signal to prospective suppliers that a potential market exists for the technology.
The partners hope that benefits such as economies of scale will result from demonstrating joint demand for buses beyond the scope of ongoing demonstration projects, and encourage suppliers to move towards the commercialization of hydrogen buses as soon as possible.
On a related note, European producers of hydrogen and fuel cell technology are seeking to establish a public-private partnership with the European Commission. This partnership, known as a Joint Technology Initiative (JTI), is intended to create a framework for efficient, coordinated demonstration projects and the research and development work that is required for the commercialization of fuel cell vehicles.
Prof. Dr. Herbert Kohler, Vice President Group Research and Advanced Engineering Vehicle and Powertrain and DaimlerChrysler Chief Environmental Officer DaimlerChrysler, has been appointed the chairman of the HFP Advisory Council, which will play a key role in setting up the JTI.