Spain: In Alicante, Green Hydrogen, the Fuel of the Future, Will Become a Reality

By June 16, 2021 7   min read  (1291 words)

June 16, 2021 |

Fuel cells works, Spain: In Alicante, Green Hydrogen, the Fuel of the Future, Will Become a Reality

Vectalia and the Qatari fund FTV have sealed an agreement this morning in Alicante for the integration of green hydrogen as fuel for part of the bus fleet of the Alicante company, which provides the public transport service in the province of Alicante. 

The project, which aims to finance the Next Generation EU Funds, and is the first to propose the large-scale use of green hydrogen as fuel, in the transport decarbonization strategy. The councilor-delegate of Vectalia, Antonio Arias placeholder image, has announced that Alicante will have the first plant in the Valencian Community to manufacture this completely innocuous fuel, since it only generates pure water as waste in its manufacture. The plant will have a hydro generation station to refuel some buses (80 in the first phase) that have a range of 400 kilometers and recharge tanks in 10 minutes. Vectalia intends to incorporate the new fleet (each bus costs 600,000 euros) to interurban routes in a first phase, provided that it reaches a successful port and there is financial support from the European Union. In the presentation held on the San Vicente campus, a bus-powered by green hydrogen has given a couple of laps with exceptional passengers such as the rector, Amparo Navarro, and the Minister of Mobility, Arcadi Spain.

The project, presented to the Ministries of Ecological Transition and Industry and Science and Innovation and is positioned as a firm candidate for financing from the Next Generation EU Funds, contemplates the construction of a 10 MW hydrolysis plant powered by a photovoltaic plant and a hydro generation that will allow the refueling of some 80 buses, planned in the first phase. Thanks to the technology that drives mobility with this clean fuel, the buses will have a range of 400 km and will cover interurban routes between Alicante and nearby municipalities, avoiding the emission of more than 75 tons of CO2 into the atmosphere only in the initial phase.

To celebrate this pioneering initiative, both companies have organized an event at the campus of the University of Alicante which has been attended by the Rector of the University, Amparo Navarro, and the Regional Minister for Territorial Policy, Public Works and Mobility of the Valencian Community, Arcadi Spain. The event was also attended by a significant number of mayors and mobility councilors from various Alicante municipalities, representatives of other companies, professors and university experts.

During the event, the attendees had the opportunity to make the first journey of the entire Valencian Community with one of the buses powered by green hydrogen; the H2.City Gold model from Caetanobus, the largest bus manufacturer in Portugal, has had the courtesy to offer the vehicle for the occasion. The bus, framed within the FRV and Vectalia alliance, has completed a symbolic journey within the perimeter of the University of Alicante campus.

The vehicle has an electric motor 180kw Siemens, Toyota fuel cell of 60 kW, a range of 400 kilometers and a recharge capacity of less than 9 minutes. The zero-emission bus-only generates ultrapure water as waste, is highly silent. The H2.City Gold offers its passengers a higher level of comfort and accessibility. The batteries, the hydrogen tanks and the fuel cell are located on the roof to optimize the interior space, making it more spacious, with a capacity of 62 passengers.

Arcadi Spain, Minister of Territorial Policy, Public Works and Mobility highlights the “interest of the Valencian Community in the path towards the ecological transition, specifically in terms of decarbonisation of mobility, and in the creation of a green corridor”. The minister is also grateful for “the commitment expressed by FRV and Vectalia to develop a mobility model that is increasingly responsible, sustainable and respectful of the environment.”

For its part, Amparo Navarro, rector of the UA, underlines that “from the University of Alicante we feel tremendously proud to be able to host an event with such an important symbolic meaning for our autonomous community. The alliance between FRV and Vectalia for the integration of green hydrogen in public transport places us before a reality in terms of sustainable mobility that seemed like a utopia just a few years ago and that, thanks to research, development and commitment to clean technologies, allows us today to look with hope to the future of mobility ”.

Felipe Hernandez, Director of Engineering and FRV-X, points out that with this project by Vectalia “we have the opportunity to combine the production of green hydrogen with the existing demand that, we trust, will progressively expand in the coming years to continue on the path of the much-needed energy transition that, at FRV, we have the ambition to lead on a global level ”.

Rubén Darío Urrestarazu, Director of Innovation and Projects of Vectalia, points out the “open and inclusive” nature of the agreement between FRV and Vectalia; a collaborative project that seeks to “incorporate new strategic alliances with organizations at the forefront of the green H2 value chain, from generation and production to end uses”. In fact, the initiative has letters of adhesion from the rectors of the two Universities, the Ministry of Mobility and Innovation, the Alicante City Council, the Port Authority, the Technological Institute of Energy, as well as several companies such as the Baleària and Boluda shipping companies. “We are very proud to have our H2.CityGold as the first hydrogen bus to be part of this incredible project. This is our best contribution to a future of green mobility solutions, where we all want to live! “Highlighted Kohei Umeno, commercial director of CaetanoBus.

FRV, part of Abdul Latif Jameel Energy, is a world leader in the development of renewable energy. In line with our ambition to continue to lead the global transition to a more sustainable energy future, FRV has gone from being just a developer, to becoming an independent energy producer. They aim to be the world’s leading green energy and infrastructure platform. Therefore, to carry out this strategic vision, we have accelerated our growth thanks to the return of our activities, the contribution of shareholders and the rotation of assets through the sale of minority interests. As a consequence, the company expects an investment of more than 1.5 billion dollars with the aim of doubling the total installed capacity, and going from 2 GW in 2021 to 4 GW in 2024.

The alincantina Vectalia is a company specialized in mobility and services that develops its activity in Spain, France and Morocco. More than 100 years of activity give the group experience and extensive knowledge of the management of quality services focused on the private and municipal sphere. Vectalia transports more than 65 million travelers each year and its portfolio of business clients exceeds 1,500, both in the public and private sectors. With a staff of more than 3,500 employees, the company, based in Alicante, is committed to young talent and training, through two Chairs attached to the University of Alicante and Miguel Hernández de Elche. Vectalia aspires to contribute to the development of smarter cities and improve mobility and the services received by its citizens.

CaetanoBus, a company of Toyota Caetano Portugal and Mitsui & Co, is a bus and chassis manufacturer from Portugal. CaetanoBus is one of the world’s leading companies in the development of electric mobility, both in battery-powered buses of electric vehicles, and in fuel cell buses powered by TOYOTA, in an exclusive cooperation for Europe. The company has been consolidating its portfolio of products, both for cities and airports (through its COBUS brand) with buses and coaches that are the result of its technical capacity in the development of unique and customer-oriented mobility solutions. CaetanoBus is also the manufacturer of COBUS, the world market leader in airport bus transportation. CaetanoBus has focused on electric mobility since 1980.

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