Fifty new hydrogen buses in public transport. Minister Stientje Van Veldhoven (Environment and Housing), deputy Floor Vermeulen (province of South Holland) and deputy Fleur Gräper (province of Groningen) today sign that agreement.
All 50 buses will travel through Groningen, Drenthe and South Holland by 2021 at the latest. The first 20 of these buses have already been ordered and will transport the first travelers in the coming year. With this agreement, emission-free public transport is another step closer. That is good for the climate and clean air. In addition, driving on hydrogen gives a positive boost.
The deployment of 50 new hydrogen buses is important for making transport in the Netherlands more sustainable. There are currently 8 hydrogen buses in public transport in the Netherlands. Minister Stientje van Veldhoven: “Very good news that 50 more will soon be added. Hydrogen really has the future when it comes to heavy means of transport such as buses and trucks. They have a large operating radius, without burdening the climate and air quality. Nowadays there are few gas stations for hydrogen, but that is of course a chicken-egg story. These 50 buses will all be refueling later. That can be the boost that driving on hydrogen needs ”.
Battery-electric cars are suitable for smaller distances. With hydrogen-electric vehicles you can cover distances of more than 400 kilometers on one tank, without producing exhaust gases. This also applies to heavy vehicles, such as buses. The decrease in hydrogen from the buses contributes to the economic viability of hydrogen filling stations. In addition, the technology developed for this can later also be used for, for example, trucks, ships and trains running on hydrogen. And the use of hydrogen reduces the load on our electricity network.
Fifty buses in three provinces
The cooperation agreement will be symbolically signed this afternoon on a hydrogen bus, which is parked on the bus platform at The Hague Central Station. Twenty of the fifty hydrogen buses will actually be driving around there, which are used in the province of South Holland.
“We have the ambition to keep South Holland easily accessible. We also want to work in an innovative way for a better climate. The arrival of the hydrogen buses offers great opportunities to make public transport in South Holland even more sustainable, ”says deputy Floor Vermeulen.
Of the 50 buses, 20 will run in the provinces of Groningen and Drenthe. These buses have been ordered and the corresponding hydrogen filling stations have also been put out to tender. An additional 10 buses will be added to serve the Emmen region. Deputy Fleur Gräper: “By signing this agreement we are concretely fulfilling our joint ambition to be at the forefront of the transition from fossil energy to clean and renewable energy, in this case in the form of hydrogen. The buses and the hydrogen filling points are a fundamental building block for us in the hydrogen economy of the future. “Europe” also gives us an important boost in this by pointing out that we are the first Hydrogen Valley in Europe and we are proud of that. ”
Cooperation between European institutions, the provinces of Groningen and South Holland and the Ministry of Infrastructure and Water Management make the realization of this project possible. The EU contributes 7.5 million euros, the provinces and the ministry each 3.75 million euros. In addition, the provinces are also financially responsible for operating the buses.
2030 whole OV emission free
In 2016 the government made agreements with clients in public transport that after 2025 every new bus will be emission-free. From 2030 all buses in public transport must run emission-free. These agreements were confirmed in the climate agreement that was presented in June of this year. There are currently around 500 zero-emission buses in the Netherlands, mostly battery-electric. That number is expected to double in 2020. There are currently eight hydrogen filling stations in the Netherlands. This government period is expected to be 20.