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UK-HyRES joined the HEA Annual Conference 2024

Prof Tim Mays and Dr Sibimol Luke represented UK-HyRES at the HEA Annual Conference 2024 in London on 23 May. Lord Callanan, Parliamentary Under Secretary of State (Minister of Energy Efficiency and Green Finance) was the keynote speaker and he said that the UK needs decisive action more than ambition. He also assured the industry in this time of uncertainty of the UK’s general election that there may not be many policy changes even if the government changes since the country’s climate targets and net-zero goals remain the same. 

The conference theme of ‘acting on ambition’ brought together a range of stakeholders including government representatives, policymakers, industry leaders, academics, lawyers, consultants, investors, insurers and bankers. All are essential to scale up the hydrogen sector. The conference reiterated the need for joint actions, strategic planning, more funding and support from the government, and fast decisions if the UK is to become a net exporter of hydrogen and to capture a share of global market technologies. 

Tim Mays spoke at the ‘Accelerating Action’ session. He did a short presentation about the mission of the hub, the research themes, the funding available, and the great interest the hub received in the stage 1 research project call. He also emphasised the requirement for more investment from the government and industry in academia and research and for the industry to be involved with academia from the very beginning of research at low TRL levels to build the confidence of the industry and to take the innovations out of the lab.

Different sessions highlighted the need for research and innovation in hydrogen technologies, more investments in R&D in OEMs, challenges in finding off-takers, and at least a few projects that are up and running to build investors’ confidence. Overall, the conference encouraged the hydrogen sector to go forward with its ambitious goals and projects and it is possible to build them together despite the challenges as there are solutions to all the problems.

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