In response to the consultation on non-road mobile machinery (NRMM) by the Department for Energy Security and Net Zero and the Department for Transport, the Hydrogen Energy Association (HEA) has raised significant concerns regarding the government’s approach to sustainability in the construction industry.

The HEA, representing 120 leading hydrogen businesses, challenges the government’s vision for NRMM, arguing that it inadequately acknowledges hydrogen’s potential compared to electrification. CEO Celia Greaves insists on a more inclusive approach that prioritizes hydrogen alongside other technologies in a pragmatic, long-term roadmap.

Greaves highlights hydrogen’s suitability for NRMM, citing both hydrogen internal combustion engines (ICEs) and fuel cells as viable options for decarbonization. ICEs offer reduced initial investment and minimal emissions, while fuel cells provide low operational costs and reliability.

The HEA emphasizes that certain technologies like battery electric and tethered electric are not universally suitable for NRMM due to harsh operating conditions and mobility requirements. Hydrogen’s flexibility makes it a viable option even in transient environments like construction sites.

The HEA’s response not only identifies concerns but also offers concrete recommendations to the government. These include aligning with the EU’s recognition of hydrogen ICE as a zero-emissions technology and drawing inspiration from successful subsidy schemes in other countries.

HEA stresses the importance of avoiding favoritism towards specific technologies like electrification, as this could undermine the potential of other solutions. The association calls for a diversified approach that encourages innovation and considers future developments.

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