A new report from the Centre for Policy Studies, a leading UK think tank, argues the UK’s approach to transport decarbonisation must properly embrace hydrogen.

The centre-right think tank, founded by Margaret Thatcher in the 1970s, argues that failure to act would forfeit significant future economic opportunities and the hydrogen must be included in the overarching strategy being developed by the Department for Transport, which is due release its Transportation Decarbonisation Plan next month.

The new CPS report ‘Driving Change’, written by Eamonn Ives, calls for hydrogen to be given a much bigger role in transport decarbonisation by using the UK bus fleet as a testbed for the technology. Ives points out that other economies are moving quickly to seize the global hydrogen market. Embracing hydrogen, he says, would give Britain an opportunity to lead the world in the sector and create thousands of green jobs.

The report also points out that Britain will need a hydrogen infrastructure to help decarbonise other sectors, such as domestic heating and industrial processes, so it makes sense to lay the groundwork now – and ensure that the UK is at the forefront of a new, low-carbon industry with significant export potential.

UK Transport Secretary Grant Shapps is reported as saying he welcomes the work done by the CPS and others “to come up with new and innovative ways to deliver on this government’s ambitious decarbonisation agenda”.

Jo Bamford, Founder and CEO of green hydrogen producer Ryse Hydrogen, said, “This report is further evidence that hydrogen’s time is now and that we need support for UK industry, UK jobs, and a product which can be made and used entirely on these shores.

“If we fail to act, we will become importers rather than exporters of another green technology required to get us to net zero, just as we did with wind turbines and batteries. It’s simply a matter of which country will be the first to capture the industrial opportunities of acting first. China, Australia and Germany to name a few are all moving quickly. But with hydrogen-electric buses entering service in major UK cities this year, the UK is primed and ready to lead the race.”