Friday, 21 August 2020

Wrightbus Owner Reveals Plans for Scottish Hydrogen Fuel Plant

Jo Bamford, the industrialist, owner of Wrightbus and JCB heir who is championing hydrogen power, has revealed plans to create a Scottish hydrogen fuel production plant.

He said the production unit will be sited outside Glasgow and it is expected to be operational by November next year when the rescheduled COP26 climate event is due to take place in the city.

Mr Bamford earlier said Glasgow could run 300 hydrogen-powered buses, while Aberdeen is set to put a fleet of hydrogen powered double deckers on the road.

He leads green hydrogen production company Ryse and last year acquired Northern Ireland-based manufacturer Wrightbus, and envisages around 3,000 hydrogen buses - about 10 per cent of the UK’s total fleet - could be running by 2024.

Mr Bamford said: “We will have a Scottish solution outside of Glasgow ready and running for November next year.

“A production system that will be ready for COP26 being built in Scotland.”

A fleet of hydrogen-powered double decker buses that is claimed to be the world’s first is due to be launched in Scotland later this year.

First Aberdeen is to run the 15 hydrogen-powered double deckers supplied by Wrightbus as part of an £8.3 million project been funded by Aberdeen City Council, the Scottish Government, and the European Union, with an investment of £500,000 per vehicle. Mr Bamford, who hailed Holyrood’s commitment to hydrogen, said “it is essential that strong partnerships exist between the government, local authorities and companies to unlock investments like these”.

Green hydrogen is created by electrolysis of water using power sources such as wind or solar.