The UK hydrogen alliance: Accelerating decarbonisation

by | Sep 8, 2023 | Airlines, Airports, Travel Tech

The aviation industry connects people, boosts economies, and fosters international collaboration. To enable its long term benefits to continue, aviation urgently needs to decarbonise.

For now, the path to a decarbonised aviation sector is not yet clear, with hydrogen, SAF, synthetic fuels or batteries, and many more approaches all working towards a greener future.

This week, major players in the UK aviation and renewable energy sectors established the Hydrogen in Aviation (HIA) alliance. Members including easyJet, Rolls-Royce, Airbus, Ørsted, GKN Aerospace and Bristol Airport will work collaboratively to accelerate the delivery of zero carbon aviation, urging more attention should be paid to the potential of the direct use of hydrogen.

Composed of members that have already begun developing new hydrogen powered aircraft and tested hydrogen powered jet engines, HIA is well positioned to fast-track the industry’s progress.

Sabine Klauke, Chief Technology Officer at Airbus said:

“As Airbus continues to mature the aircraft technologies needed to deliver hydrogen-powered flight, a united industry voice is needed to secure a robust ecosystem of renewably-sourced hydrogen. Joining our peers from across the UK aviation landscape in a targeted approach to policy and investment action brings us closer to a decarbonised future of flying.” 

The alliance urges collaboration across policy makers, promising to work constructively with Government, local authorities, and the aviation and hydrogen sectors. Eager to position the UK as a global leader of hydrogen in aviation, Johan Lundgren, CEO of easyJet and first Chair of HIA, said:

“There is no doubt that the UK has the potential to become a world leader in hydrogen aviation, which could bring with it a £34bn per annum boost to the country’s economy by 2050, but in order to capture this opportunity, rapid change is needed and the time to act is now.

We must work together to deliver the radical solutions required for a hard to abate industry like aviation so we can protect and maximise the benefits that it brings to the UK economy and society and that we know British consumers want to be preserved. 

HIA looks forward to working with the UK Government to ensure the right funding, regulatory and policy changes are implemented to accelerate the delivery of zero carbon aviation.”

It is likely we will see more alliances and partnerships forged, as the industry strives towards sustainability.

At this year’s World Aviation Festival, Jane Ashton, Sustainability Director, easyJet will be speaking alongside Caroline Drischel, Head of Corporate Responsibility, Lufthansa Group, Gonçalo Pires, Chief Financial Officer, TAP Air Portugal, Yvonne Moynihan, Chief Corporate and ESG Officer, Wizz Air, and others discussing how the aviation ecosystem can work better to achieve global sustainability goals. Book your ticket now to hear what they have to say.

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