The last weeks of 2009 have been dominated by the developments in the UN Climate Conference COP 15 in Copenhagen during which fuel cell cars whisked delegates criss cross Copenhagen. Although the final outcome did not live up to the EU aspirations of 30 % emission reduction by 2015,   EU’s commitment of  €7,4  bln in the next three years (2,4 bln already this year!)  to support developing counties to reduce emissions  could become important also for our sector, especially in relation to development of new markets for low carbon technologies. In addition recent plans for an EU Electric Car Plan that will be unveiled by the Spanish presidency next month needs monitoring with regards to the support  of fuel cells cars as part of EU’s future electric transport ambitions.  Therefore the EHA is closely watching the nominations and final responsibilities of the new EU Commissioners who unfortunately will now only be officially nominated by the end of February not in time for this newsletter. The Commissioner designate  for Energy for example stated in his hearing in the EU Parliament that he will be responsible for all EU Energy Research, including the SET Plan..  As the Joint Undertaking for fuel cells and hydrogen (FCH JU)  is the first European Industrial Initiative under the SET Plan, it has to be clarified which Directorate(s) will take care of the FCH JU activities and budget.
Entering our next decade of operations the EHA is determined, together with its national association members and industry members, to encourage the new EU Commission and EU Parliament to ensure rapid commercialistation of hydrogen and fuel cell applications by  including political and financial  support in new EU regualtions and programmes  to make Europe the market leader in electric transport development. The EHA together with HyER (formerly HyRaMP), the Westmidlands in Europe  and with the support of ERTRAC and the FCH JU is organising an electric transport infrastructure event during the EU Sustainable Energy Week (EUSEW) on March 23, 2010 form 14:00 – 17:00 in Brussels to discuss a sustainable infrastructure built-up for both battery and fuel cell cars. For more information please visit the EUSEW site.