Australia deal

Billionaires unite to supply hydrogen to UK

Jo Bamford

Jo Bamford: ‘a monumental deal’

A deal between two billionaire industrialists will see an Australian company become the biggest supplier of green hydrogen to the UK.

Lord Bamford, chairman of construction company JCB, and his son Jo, who chairs Ryze Hydrogen, have secured a multi-billion pound deal with Fortescue Future Industries (FFI) run by metals magnate Andrew Forrest.

The deal, signed on the eve of the COP26 summit in Glasgow, will see JCB and Ryze purchase 10% of FFI’s global green hydrogen production. 

Under the partnership, FFI will lead the green hydrogen production and logistics to the UK market, and JCB and Ryze will manage green hydrogen distribution and development of customer demand in the UK.

FFI’s green hydrogen production is anticipated to grow to 15 million tonnes of GH2 per year by 2030, accelerating in the 2030s to 50 million tonnes per year.

Lord Bamford said: “This is an important step towards getting green hydrogen to the customer. It’s fine having an engine powered by green hydrogen, but no good if customers can’t get green hydrogen to fuel their machines. This is a major advance on the road towards making green hydrogen a viable solution.”

Wrightbus hydrogen bus

Wrightbus builds buses fuelled by hydrogen

His son Jo, an Edinburgh University graduate who owns Wrightbus in Ballymena, is the founder of Ryze which is building the UK’s first network of green hydrogen production plants. Wrightbus built the world’s first hydrogen double decker. He has made a number of approaches to the Scottish Government to participate in its hydrogen strategy.

He said: “This is a monumental deal, not just for us but for the UK as a whole. We have chosen to partner with the global leaders in green hydrogen and it is fabulous that two countries, the UK and Australia, can come together to create a brighter future.

“We are walking the walk on green hydrogen and now we want the Government to show its commitment to the sector by investing in buses, trains, trucks, ships, aircraft  and the entire green hydrogen supply chain.”

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