Press Release in Herald NewspaperJuly 10, 2015
The Herald ran a newspaper story on the LCEF project yesterday. Please see below for the printed text.
Bright Green Hydrogen / Levenmouth Community Energy Project
Green hydrogen power is becoming widely recognised as a key catalyst to driving forward transport and associated infrastructure for generations to come. One of Scotland’s leading forces behind making this a reality is Fife through its pioneering Levenmouth Community Energy Project, a collaborative initiative which is being led by Bright Green Hydrogen and supported by a number of partners including Fife Council and Toshiba.
Based at the Hydrogen Office in Methil, the new industry development involves the facility being developed into the world’s foremost demonstrator of innovative applications of hydrogen derived from renewable sources.
Part of this involves Levenmouth becoming home to one of Europe’s largest fleet of hydrogen dual-fuel vehicles (up to 25), some of which will be operated by Fife Council. The fleet includes 10 electric-powered Renault Kangoo vans with H2 fuel cell range extender which will be 100% zero emissions if charged using The Hydrogen Office’s 100% green electric vehicle charging station.
The project also includes 10 Ford Transit vehicles that are converted to run on a diesel and hydrogen mixture as well as two refuse collection vehicles (RCVs) which are also to be converted to run on diesel and hydrogen and, as such, are believed to be a world-first of their kind.
The hydrogen range extender doubles the range of an electric van, allowing it to travel up to 200 miles before charging is required. The vans are to be leased out under the Levenmouth scheme to local businesses, allowing them to improve their green credentials by operating a vehicle that runs on green energy.
Businesses will also be able to refuel the vehicles with hydrogen at the Hydrogen Office or Fife Council’s Bankhead depot in Glenrothes with both locations having hydrogen refuelling stations installed as part of the project.
George Archibald, chief executive of Bright Green Hydrogen, said: “Hydrogen vehicles are the latest form of technology deployed in the effort to decarbonise the use of energy in Scotland with the only emission occurring from these vehicles being water vapour. Hydrogen refuelling has been installed in London, Swindon and Aberdeen but the Levenmouth project involves developing the largest concentration of vehicles in the UK. As a result, it is pivotal to putting the region on the global, clean energy map.
“The partners behind the Levenmouth project have already been engaging with local businesses and the feedback we have received has been extremely positive. The vans will be leased out to the public and private sectors and the leases will very flexible – based on periods of months or years – so that businesses can try them out.”
Earlier this year, the importance of the Levenmouth development was recognised after the Scottish Government awarded £4million from its Local Energy Challenge Fund to help kick start the project while last week, the scheme marked a major milestone after Fife Council awarded local company, Heil Farid, a contract worth around £1.5million for the supply of nine refuse collection vehicles (RCV) – two of which are earmarked for the Levenmouth project.
The project partners anticipate that the vehicles will start becoming available for lease in early 2016 and are also looking into the possibility of introducing other hydrogen powered vehicles at a later stage in the project.
Along with Bright Green Hydrogen, Fife Council and Toshiba, the partners behind the Levenmouth initiative also comprise Leven Valley Development Trust, Fife College, BOC (for hydrogen transport), Green Business Fife, Community Energy Scotland, and the Scottish Hydrogen and Fuel Cell Association (SHFCA).
For Toshiba, the scheme is the most complex hydrogen project outside Japan to date that the company has become involved with. The company will implement the on-site hydrogen energy management scheme by providing the overarching control system that will oversee all the scheme’s hydrogen and renewable assets as well as enhance project learning.