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Alternative Fuels: Hydrogen

Question for Department for Transport

UIN 40867, tabled on 18 August 2021

To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, what assessment he has made of the potential role of nuclear energy in producing hydrogen over the next five years to support the introduction of hydrogen for vehicles, maritime and aviation.

Answered on

7 September 2021

Officials from the Department for Transport and the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy are in regular contact on the development of our green hydrogen policies. This includes engagement to better understand the merits of any support for hydrogen production using nuclear energy.

The Renewable Transport Fuel Obligation (RTFO) has reduced carbon emissions from UK transport fuels by of 275 mega tonnes from 2008 to 2020 through supporting the use of renewable fuels. There have been no recent ministerial discussions to expand the RTFO to cover nuclear derived fuels. Any decision on extension of the RTFO to support fuels derived from nuclear energy would need to be carefully considered because this could divert nuclear energy from the electricity grid where it plays a valuable role in providing low carbon energy.

We will set out a plan for the path to zero carbon shipping in 2022. The Sustainable Aviation Fuel (SAF) consultation launched on 23rd July this year seeks to explore the suitability of nuclear energy for producing SAF.

Any proposals would be the subject of a public consultation, published economic analysis and require primary and secondary legislation.