15-year agreement set to enable decarbonisation of bus routes around Gatwick Airport
Go-Ahead Group has inked a major green hydrogen supply agreement with gas and liquids giant Air Products that has been hailed as the largest deal signed by a passenger transport operator for the zero emission fuel.
Under the terms of the deal, the bus and rail operator – one of the largest transport companies in the UK – is to purchase hydrogen produced using renewable energy at a number of sites in Air Products’ network.
The fuel is set to power a fleet of single-decker hydrogen fuel cell buses expected to hit roads around Gatwick Airport in Sussex in Surrey from this June, as part of a deal Go-Ahead inked with bus manufacturer Wrightbus last November.
Go-Ahead announced this afternoon it has signed a 15-year deal with Air Products, which will see the green fuel supplied to Go-Ahead’s Crawley bus depot in small volume liquid form. The liquid will be subsequently converted into gas that can be stored on the roof of vehicles.
“This is our first hydrogen supply deal, and it represents a milestone in our plans to transition Go-Ahead’s entire fleet of buses to zero emission fuel,” said Christian Schreyer, group chief executive of the Go-Ahead Group. “We’re delighted to be working with Air Products and with Wrightbus.”
Go-Ahead said the initial order of 20 buses from Northern Ireland’s Wrightbus had been enabled by funding from Gatwick Airport, the UK government and the European Union.
It has confirmed it is still considering purchasing 34 more hydrogen buses in a bid to decarbonise the majority of services operated by its subsidiary Metrobus in West Sussex and Surrey, including the ‘Fastway’ rapid transit network that covers routes in and around Gatwick Airport.