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Glasgow hydrogen fuel storage project gets cash injection

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A ‘first-of-a-kind’ hydrogen storage project near Glasgow has been backed by nearly £10 million in UK government funding, which it says will help create high-skilled jobs and drive progress towards decarbonising the UK transport sector.

The £9.4 million cash boost will see the Whitelee green hydrogen project develop the UK’s largest electrolyser, a system which converts water into hydrogen gas as a way to store energy. It will be located alongside ScottishPower’s Whitelee Windfarm, the largest of its kind in the UK, and will produce and store hydrogen to supply local transport providers with zero-carbon fuel.

Developed by ITM Power and BOC, in conjunction with ScottishPower’s Hydrogen division, the state-of-the-art facility will be able to produce enough green hydrogen per day – 2.5 to 4 tonnes – that, once stored, could provide the equivalent of enough zero-carbon fuel for 225 buses travelling to and from Glasgow and Edinburgh each day.

The announcement follows COP26, the global climate change summit held in Glasgow earlier this month, and supports the city’s ambition to become net zero by 2030. The Whitelee project will be the UK’s largest power-to hydrogen energy storage project, using an electrolyser powered by the renewable energy from the Whitelee Windfarm. This will create green hydrogen, a zero-carbon gas that is produced via electrolysis (splitting) of water, using renewable power.

Energy and Climate Change Minister Greg Hands said: “This first-of-a-kind hydrogen facility will put Scotland at the forefront of plans to make the UK a world-leading hydrogen economy, bringing green jobs to Glasgow, while also helping to decarbonise local transport – all immediately following the historic COP26 talks. Projects like these will be vital as we shift to a green electricity grid, helping us get the full benefit from our world-class renewables, supporting the UK as we work to eliminate the UK’s contribution to climate change.”

Secretary of State for Scotland Alister Jack said: “This tremendous investment at Whitelee Windfarm illustrates how serious the UK government is about supporting projects that will see us achieve net zero by 2050. In the weeks following COP26 in Glasgow, it has never been more important to champion projects like this one, which embraces new hydrogen technology while creating highly-skilled jobs. We can, and will, achieve a greener, cleaner future.”

Graham Cooley, CEO of ITM Power Ltd, said: ‘We are very pleased to be a partner in Green Hydrogen for Scotland and this first project, Green Hydrogen for Glasgow, will see the deployment of the largest electrolyser to date in the UK.”

Jim Mercer, Business President, BOC UK & Ireland said: “The Green Hydrogen for Glasgow project is both innovative and exciting. It will help to shape the future of energy storage and demonstrate the value of hydrogen to Scotland’s growing low-carbon economy. This project will accelerate development across multiple disciplines – from production and storage, to transportation and end use.”

Barry Carruthers, ScottishPower Hydrogen Director, said: “This blend of renewable electricity generation and green hydrogen production promises to highlight the multiple ways in which society can decarbonise by using these technologies here and now. Building on the government’s plans to make the UK a world-leading hydrogen economy and ensure the sector has the skilled workforce it needs, an additional £2.25 million in new government funding will support the development of hydrogen skills and standards in the UK.

“This funding, under the Net Zero Innovation Portfolio, will see the British Standards Institution (BSI) develop technical standards for hydrogen products, and a consortium comprising Energy and Utility Skills and the Institution of Gas Engineers and Managers, will establish new standards and training specifications to facilitate the training of hydrogen gas installers.”

Revolutionary fleet technology company secures investment fuelling future growth

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Lightfoot, the UK’s leading provider of in-cab driver coaching and engagement technology, has today announced that Volpi Capital has invested in the Devon-based green-tech company.

The business, which rewards smoother and safer driving leading to reductions in accidents, fuel use and emissions in fleets, first developed its technology to help ICE fleets cut costs and improve efficiency. Now, it is carving a niche in the Electric Vehicle (EV) sector using its heritage in EV motors and batteries to give it an edge in range extension.

Read more here…

Yodel invests £15m in green fleet

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Parcel carrier Yodel has announced a £15.2m investment in its fleet, designed to reduce the environmental impact of its road-based operations.

The investment includes new vehicles and trailers as well as technology to improve efficiency and safety.

The firm has taken delivery of an all-electric 7.5 tonne light-duty truck, the first in its fleet.

The Mitsubishi FUSO eCanter will initially be based at Yodel’s customer delivery depot in Hayes, and used across London.

It will be put through its paces to ensure that the subsequent electric vehicles are deployed in the right locations. Silent and emission-free, the state-of-the-art vehicle has a load capacity of up to four and half tonnes and is powered by six high voltage batteries.

The carrier has also invested in Microlise technology for all its tractor units and trailers, a total of more than 1,300 assets. This software monitors factors such as speed, location, and road traffic levels. It reports back to Yodel’s business control tower, allowing the team to view the network in real-time and adapt to dynamic conditions.

Microlise’s Android-based DriveTab tablet devices act as the main interface for driver communication and navigation. Journeys can be planned and monitored by the business control tower and instructions sent to the driver, while driving style can be evaluated and feedback provided to optimise performance. Yodel has already seen a seven per cent improvement in fuel efficiency since the introduction of the technology.

In addition, Yodel has fitted every tractor unit with a Microlise panic button, enabling drivers to alert the business control tower of an emergency. The carrier is also trialing a number of dashboard camera systems for its tractor units, to aid incident investigation.

Yodel is also looking to expand its urban bicycle delivery offering. It currently uses bicycle couriers to deliver parcels in central Oxford, Stevenage, Hereford and Brighton with plans to introduce them in Birmingham, London and Manchester soon.

Andrew Peeler, CEO of Yodel, said: “This large-scale investment in our fleet is designed to improve efficiency and minimise the environmental impact of deliveries. I’m delighted that we’ve introduced electric to our fleet this Spring, and we have plans to expand our use of both pedal and electric power this year.

“In addition, we have invested in technology to calculate the most efficient routes and evaluate our drivers’ driving style to further reduce our carbon footprint. 

“Our CollectPlus service helps to minimise congestion and pollution by consolidating deliveries to local stores, which customers can then pick up at their convenience. We are also striving to ensure that every home delivery is successful on the first attempt through the use of enhanced tracking and our Inflight service, which allows customers to redirect or reschedule if they realise they are going to be out when their delivery is due.”

The fleet announcement follows Yodel’s £1m investment in a bespoke semi-automated sorter at its Wednesbury site at the end of last year. The sorter, dubbed Merlin, has enhanced the speed and efficiency of sorting irregular shaped items and improved safety by reducing manual handling.