The hydrogen generator being tested by Kier Highways on its A585 Lancashire bypass project

Kier Highways is using an innovative hydrogen-powered fuel cell as part of its A585 Windy Harbor to Skippool construction project in Poulton, near Blackpool.

The project is in conjunction with Hydrologiq and is the first 110kVA hydrogen generator deployment undertaken by Kier Highways.

This government-backed deployment aims to uncover the practical challenges of replacing diesel with hydrogen as well as reducing the site’s carbon emissions, producing less noise, vibration and air pollution.

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At the end of 2021, Hydrologiq secured a grant from the Department of Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, to deploy hydrogen generators at sites across the UK.

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He said that in the long term, replacing an equivalent diesel generator with this generator could create a 40-80% reduction in CO2 emissions when powered by gray hydrogen (made from gas natural), and nearly 100% when powered by green hydrogen (made from non-fossil fuels such as water).

As part of its One Planet Action Plan (OPAP), Kier Highways has committed to achieving Net Zero Scope 1 and Scope 2 emissions by 2030. This is in line with the Kier Group Sustainability Framework , Building for a sustainable world that sets a goal of net zero in all operations by 2045.

Matt Tompsett, Head of Environment and Sustainability at Kier Highways, said: “Hydrogen is a key solution to decarbonising our fleet and plant. At Kier Highways, we aim to have our entire fleet and factory running on alternative fuels by 2030. There is no silver bullet to this problem and there won’t be just one alternative fuel solution. .

“As we move our small fleet and small plant to electricity, we recognize that hydrogen is currently the most viable solution for a larger fleet, plant and generators.

“Testing this hydrogen generator is an important step on this journey, helping ‘proof of concept’, dispelling myths and engaging our employees who will use the new equipment and technology.”

On behalf of National Highways, Kier Highways is constructing a 4.85km long dual carriageway bypass between Windy Harbor Junction and Skippool Junction. It aims to reduce congestion, increase economic growth and improve safety for pedestrians, equestrians and cyclists around the busy A585 road from Fleetwood to Kirkham.


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