Alyn Smith MEP has voiced his full support for Aberdeen City Council's new Hydrogen Strategy at its Brussels launch earlier today.
As part of the strategy, the city has been awarded €9.3 million by the European Commission to invest in Europe's largest fleet of hydrogen-powered buses, and has also been selected to lead the development of hydrogen technologies in cities all across the North Sea Region. As chair of today's event, Alyn was joined by Cllr Barney Crockett (Leader of Aberdeen City Council) and Tudor Constantinescu (Principle Adviser to the European Energy Commissioner) to discuss what the new strategy means for the development of hydrogen economies across Europe.
Speaking after the launch, Alyn said:
"It is an honour for me to welcome the leaders of this inspiring new strategy to Brussels today, and to see them sharing the secrets of their success with industry experts and senior members of European Commission.
"As Europe's biggest energy hub with a pre-existing energy infrastructure, Aberdeen is uniquely well-placed to lead the development of hydrogen technology. I am confident that the scheme will play a vital role in bringing the benefits of energy expertise to ordinary Aberdonians, and will help to bring the energy revolution back onshore.
"The funding that Aberdeen has secured is a shining example of how a city can gain recognition across Europe for its expertise simply by being proactive in the EU arena. The attendance of the Commission at today's event only confirms the importance they are attaching to the city's work in this area, and in showcasing Aberdeen's work in Brussels I hope we have gone some way towards cementing relations between Europe's energy and political capitals."
The first hydrogen-buses are expected to appear on the streets of Aberdeen city centre early next year, and it is hoped that in the future the scheme can be rolled out to cities all across Scotland. Other ideas being explored include the use of hydrogen in the city's district heating system and the injection of hydrogen into the gas grid.