The Wuppertal public utilities and Wuppertal waste management company have been jointly awarded the Stadtwerke Award in Gold for their hydrogen project “H2-W – Hydrogen Mobility for Wuppertal” at the Stadtwerke Congress.
The Wuppertal project shows “how to create an ideal cycle from waste disposal through energy generation to public transport”, the organizer explained the decision.WSW and AWG plan to produce hydrogen together to run fuel cell buses. For this purpose, an electrolyser and a hydrogen filling station will be built at the AWG waste incineration plant in Wuppertal’s Korzert district. The works are already running.
The electrolyzer is powered by electricity from waste incineration. “We make hydrogen out of garbage,” says AWG Managing Director Martin Bickenbach, summing up the special features of the project.
Hydrogen production should always run when market prices for electricity supply are low. “Then it is better to use the electricity from the waste-to-energy plant for the electrolysis instead of selling it,” explains Peter Storch, member of the board of WSW Energie & Wasser AG. H2-W is a group-wide project, as the customer of the hydrogen produced at AWG is WSW mobil GmbH. It will refuel fuel cell buses, which will soon be used in Wuppertal public transport. The first vehicles will be delivered later this month by the Belgian manufacturer Van Hool.
However, the hydrogen project is not only economically interesting and benefits local climate protection, but also shows how the classic business areas of municipal companies can be intelligently interlocked. This so-called sector coupling is a major topic in the municipal utility industry. This is one of the reasons why H2-W has now been recognized as a beacon project in the municipal energy industry.