Transport for London (TfL) recently launched a tender for the bulk procurement of fuel cell buses. Working in partnership with other UK cities (Aberdeen, Birmingham, Dundee), TfL is inviting potential suppliers of fuel cell buses to join a framework for the supply of single- and double-decker vehicles to cities across the UK and potentially abroad.
The bulk procurement of buses is intended significantly to increase yearly order volumes in Europe and will play a key role in reducing costs and bringing this technology closer to a commercial reality.
The procurement activity is part of the JIVE (Joint Initiative for hydrogen Vehicles across Europe) project, an EU-funded project deploying 139 new zero emission fuel cell buses across nine cities, the first deployment of this scale in Europe. The project is coordinated by Element Energy.
JIVE will run for six years from January 2017 and is co-funded by a €32-million grant from the FCH JU (Fuel Cells and Hydrogen Joint Undertaking) under the European Union Horizon 2020 framework program for research and innovation.
The overall objective of JIVE is to advance the commercialization of fuel cell buses through large-scale deployment of vehicles and infrastructure so that by the end of the project, fuel cell buses are commercially viable for bus operators to include in their fleets without subsidy, and that local and national governments feel empowered to regulate for zero emission propulsion for their public transport systems.