ENERGY: “Hydrogen Business For Climate” Forum

The forum dedicated to international hydrogen players will be held in Montbéliard on November 8 and 9. The Bourgogne-Franche-Comté region has committed almost 100 million euros to support several projects.

Press release from the Burgundy-Franche-Comté Regional Council of November 3, 2022:

The “Hydrogen Business For Climate” Forum will be held on 8 and 9 November in Montbéliard. This meeting, which brings together actors and international experts around Hydrogen, also hosts an educational space open to the general public. This initiative is part of the action plan for the Bourgogne-Franche-Comté region in favor of accelerating the energy transition.

For several years, and even more so in light of the current climate and energy challenges, the regional authority has been engaged in the development of Hydrogen as an energy vector and a central element in our energy transition strategy. We have adopted an ambitious trajectory and guidelines in our plan for regional planning and sustainable development and territorial equality to move towards a positive energy and low carbon region. Hydrogen has its place.

In fact, Bourgogne-Franche-Comté was a pioneer in hydrogen, thanks to the work on the fuel cell at the Belfort-Montbéliard Technological University. The region has been labeled as hydrogen territory since 2016 and aims to meet the challenge of ecological transition and energy transition.

In 2019, through a hydrogen roadmap built and shared with all actors in the hydrogen ecosystem, the region committed almost 100 million euros to support several projects.

Bourgogne-Franche-Comté thus supports all the areas that aim to develop hydrogen technology, especially in Dijon, Auxerre, Belfort and even Mâcon. The region supported e.g. the hydrogen station project in the Auxerre area, not only to build a complete public transport system using 100% renewable energy based on hydrogen, but to establish a whole ecosystem, the first in France to integrate the train, which will eventually integrate mobility, utility vehicles from private and public fleets, industrial needs, river navigation or stationary needs.

In total, the Bourgogne-Franche-Comté region mobilized 4.5 million euros to support the deployment of mobility ecosystems in Auxerre, Dijon and Belfort.

Last year, Bourgogne-Franche-Comté was the first region in France to formalize an order for three hydrogen trains. Designed and manufactured by Alstom, the Coradia Polyvalent dual-mode hydrogen (electric and H2) regional train will be able to transport up to 220 passengers between Auxerre and Laroche-Migennes. The culmination of the work started in 2018, carried out in partnership with SNCF teams and three other regions, the first tests of hydrogen TER are planned for 2023.

The Bourgogne-Franche-Comté region pursues the goal of creating and densifying a genuine industrial sector, born of the excellent research found in its territory. The challenge today is to scale up.

The region strongly supports private research and development, which has also made it possible to encourage companies such as the Forvia/Faurecia research and development center in Bavans or the creation of a tank test center in Belfort. The region also strongly supports the various hydrogen actions planned in the “transformation of the industrial territory” project in Nord-Franche-Comté, thus strengthening an ecosystem with assets in terms of education, research and industrial development; it is in this complete ecosystem that manufacturers such as Mc Phy and Gen Hy have decided to establish themselves.

To support scale-up in its territory, the Bourgogne-Franche-Comté region supports the development of skills that businesses need.

The study commissioned in 2020 by EMFOR had made it possible to highlight that, although H2 professions are not new professions, it is necessary to anticipate the massive recruitments that will come by coloring existing training courses, both initial and continuing, to meet the training needs of engineers and managers, to meet short-term R&D needs and medium- and long-term production profiles in connection with scale-up and more massive production of electrolysers, hydrogen tanks and components.

If since 2014 there has been a master’s degree in engineering dedicated to hydrogen energy to meet the design and R&D needs of the sector, there are more recent initiatives from specialized licenses and masters, thus the Bourgogne region -Franche-Comté is establishing training courses that will concern a larger audience: it will purchase a distance learning module for all jobseekers in occupations potentially affected by hydrogen. A first level of information about hydrogen and awareness of working in an ATEX zone will be on the program. This module will be offered in the 2023 training courses to a target of 500 to 1000 trainees.

Hydrogen represents not only a means of combating the effects of global warming, but also a vector of employment, attractiveness and growth for the region.

“Our goal is clear: to be present throughout the sector’s value chain, from production to use. It is this ambition that today makes Bourgogne-Franche-Comté a hydrogen stronghold in Europe. It is this ambition that is recognized of the European Commission and which attracts major European projects, such as McPhy or GENHy, which have chosen Bourgogne-Franche-Comté this year. Hydrogen is today a lever in favor of our energy sovereignty, the protection of our environment, the construction of ​​a new industrial sector and the creation of tomorrow’s jobs.
The forum is a new signal sent by Bourgogne-Franche-Comté to European companies: the future of hydrogen is written here and now.”
Marie-Guite Dufay, President of the Bourgogne-Franche-Comté region

100 million euros by 2030 under the hydrogen roadmap:
Including 70 million euros already allocated by the region:
– €4.5 M for H2 mobility ecosystems
– 14.3 million EUR for corporate research and innovation
– €51.9 million for the three H2 trainsets

Regional hydrogen roadmap

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