Europe is taking bold steps towards establishing a hydrogen economy with the recent adoption of the Alternative Fuel Infrastructure Regulation (AFIR).
This legislation will pave the way for the creation of a vast network of hydrogen refuelling stations across the continent. Alongside hydrogen, AFIR also sets ambitious targets for the installation of fast electric vehicle (EV) charging stations. The move is a significant milestone in Europe’s transition to a greener, more sustainable future.
The primary goal of AFIR is to deploy hydrogen refuelling stations throughout Europe to support both light- and heavy-duty vehicles. By 2030, these stations will be strategically located in all urban nodes and every 200km along the core Trans-European Transport Network (TEN-T). This network will provide the necessary infrastructure for hydrogen-powered vehicles to travel across the continent with ease.
The adopted legislation mandates that each hydrogen refuelling station must have a minimum capacity of one tonne per day, with a dispensing pressure of at least 700 bars. Although industry stakeholders had advocated for higher station capacities, the decision to set a one-tonne capacity is aimed at ensuring a uniform and consistent approach to hydrogen refuelling infrastructure.
AFIR’s implementation will have a significant impact on accelerating the adoption of hydrogen as a clean and sustainable fuel source. By establishing a wide network of refuelling stations, Europe will address the critical issue of hydrogen availability, making it more accessible to consumers and businesses alike. This, in turn, will drive the uptake of hydrogen-powered vehicles, reducing carbon emissions and contributing to the fight against climate change.
Electric Vehicle Component
AFIR’s impact is not limited to hydrogen alone. The legislation also focuses on the expansion of fast EV charging infrastructure. By 2025, fast 150kW+ EV recharging stations will be installed every 60km along the TEN-T network. Additionally, charging stations with 350kW+ output will be required every 60km along the core TEN-T and every 100km along the comprehensive TEN-T from 2025. This comprehensive approach promotes the widespread adoption of electric mobility alongside hydrogen-powered transportation.
Europe’s adoption of the Alternative Fuel Infrastructure Regulation is a decisive step towards a greener future. By prioritizing the establishment of hydrogen refuelling stations and expanding fast EV charging infrastructure, Europe is demonstrating its commitment to sustainable transportation. AFIR’s ambitious targets and strategic approach are set to drive the transition to a low-carbon economy, positioning Europe as a global leader in clean energy and transportation.