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Mark Wilkins comments on Science & Technology Committee's inquiry of "The role of hydrogen in achieving net zero"

“It is clear that there needs to be a significant investment in the gas network to support the ambition set out in the 10-Point Plan for a potential Hydrogen Town before the end of the decade. Whilst the ambition is to be applauded, there needs to be clarity on the future hydrogen roll out, including clearly defined timescales, locations and expectations.

"We look forward to this plan to be signposted in the future Heat and Building Strategy and the Hydrogen Strategy expected later in 2021. Within the hydrogen strategy, the Government needs to consider at what point it makes sense to set a maximum carbon-intensity for hydrogen supply. Both documents need to be publicly available as quickly as possible to allow manufacturers to proactively respond by defining a complementary product portfolio and preparing the supply chain.

"As suggested in the CCC’s 6th Carbon budget, we do question the nationwide mandated availability of ‘hydrogen ready' boilers from 2025. Hydrogen ready boilers will command an extra premium which is a cost burden to the end user. It is unlikely hydrogen will be available to all doorsteps in the UK within a short period of time and many initially installed hydrogen ready boilers will be unlikely to see hydrogen in their lifetime.

"Whilst the development of hydrogen boilers should continue, pre-2025 we would recommend installing efficient system upgrades to future-proof the system for a low carbon future – for either hydrogen boilers or a heat pump solution.”

Mark Wilkins, Technologies & Training Director