We’ve all heard of the local council, and those of a certain age will also fondly remember the Style Council, but are you aware of the Hydrogen Council? It’s not a group of expensively-clad fashionistas, it’s not an avant garde artists’ collective and it’s not a highbrow chemistry podcast, either. The Hydrogen Council is a serious group and it has a serious message, one that we should all be listening to at the moment.
Founded in 2017 and headquartered in Brussels, this is a CEO-led initiative aimed at encouraging the use of hydrogen power in the coming years. Given the importance of their message and the big hitters that are behind it – think BMW, Kawasaki, GM, Siemens, Toyota and many, many others – there’s a good chance that you’ll be hearing more from the Hydrogen Council in the coming years. The group represents a global powerhouse with a truly global agenda.
Key to its very existence will be the push for a stronger hydrogen infrastructure, honed by an increased consumer demand and driven by coherent cross-government strategies. The race towards Net Zero, and let’s all hope there actually IS a race, will take on many forms, and if the experts are to be believed we can expect hydrogen power to play a significant part. How significant that part will be has yet to be determined, though.
The potential moves towards a stronger hydrogen strategy are likely to come in a number of industry sectors, but it’s perhaps fair to assume that automotive is the one that will see the largest upheaval. Cars that run on hydrogen suddenly become eco-friendly assets that produce nothing but harmless water in emissions. Just close your eyes and think about that after all these years of carbon dioxide clouds. You can almost hear the cartoon birds chirping in happiness at the prospect.
It’s a marathon, not a sprint
But before we break out in spontaneous rounds of applause for the well-intentioned aims of the Hydrogen Council, we need to remind ourselves that this is a long-term project. Quick wins and even quicker fixes have their place at the moment, of course, but if significant changes – ones that can genuinely alter the dangerous tangent that we’ve been on – are to take place then we’re looking at decades rather than years.
It goes without saying that the automotive industry has done much to put the planet in its current predicament, nobody’s denying that, but we should also bear in mind that sustained efforts by major corporations are going to be vital to efforts to improve things. The CEOs that head up the companies involved in the Hydrogen Council may even one day be seen as heroes. Not the sort of heroes that wear capes and rough up sinister criminal warlords on a regular basis, obviously, but heroes nonetheless.
Look up in the sky! Is it a bird? Is it a plane? No…… it’s a CEO!
Maybe underneath their Armani suits, their Ralph Lauren shirts and their Tom Ford ties, they’re wearing blue vests with a giant red S on them.
S for sustainability, of course.