A European study has found that hydrogen fuel cells will be essential in achieveing future emission reduction targets.
The report findings were publicised in Brussels on 8th November. Contributing companies from the industrial gases community included Linde and Air Products, who joined representatives from the automotive, oil and gas, industrial gases, utility and energy industries.
The study utilised data from Linde and Air Products alongside 28 other companies and was instigated following the new EU Commission and G8 nations directive to reduce CO₂ emissions. The recent guidelines aim to reduce overall CO₂ emissions by 80% and road transport emissions by 95% before 2050. The study explores and compares the economics, sustainability and performance of internal combustion engines, battery electric vehicles, fuel-cell electric vehicles and plug-in hybrids for various vehicle segments.
Results from the study indicate that fuel cell electric cars, battery electric vehicles and plug-in hybrids need to reach a considerable market penetration in order to meet the CO₂ reduction targets. The research also showed that fuel-cell electric vehicles were preferable to battery electric vehicles; particularly in urban locations. This is thanks to the longer range and shorter refuelling windows offered by fuel-cell vehicles. Consequently, fuel-cells offer the most efficient solution to reducing CO₂ emissions in driving.
Dr Andreas Opfermann, head of Innovation Management at Linde, commented, “This later study provides convincing substantiation of the key conclusion we drew in a study back in 2005. The cost involved in building up a hydrogen infrastructure would be of reasonable proportions. This has now been underscored by the latest in-depth findings.”