Belfast Metropolitan College lead a number of EU wide global projects, specifically green hydrogen and zero carbon reduction, looking to see where they can translate and transmit to their new zero carbon futures by 2030 and 2050. The main project is Gencomm, generating energy secure communities, funded under the Inter Reg Northwest Europe.
In Northern Ireland, they have Energia leading on wind to hydrogen, to meet their carbon future to reduce their carbon footprint.
One of the projects the college is working on is GENCOMM, "GENerating energy secure COMMunities". This is a European Union-funded Interreg project looking to overcome the challenges of implementing smart hydrogen-based energy matrixes. The project looks at linking Solar Power, Wind Power, and Bioenergy with energy storage, and connecting these with the biggest users of energy (Heat, Power and Transportation fuels).
To make the project a reality we have partnered with local organisations including Hy Energy, TK Renewables, and Viridian Energy Supply Limited. We also work alongside partners further afield in Europe, sharing the knowledge and expertise needed to help each other successfully work towards feasible use of hydrogen as a low-carbon fuel.
GENCOMM will create roadmap for communities to transition to renewable, hydrogen-based energy matrixes.
The specific objectives of the project are:
1. Empower communities to implement hydrogen-based energy matrixes to sustainably satisfy their energy demand.
2. Stimulate the uptake of renewable hydrogen-based technologies by successfully running 3 demonstration facilities.
3. Establish a strong group of energy stakeholders devoted to, through the use of hydrogen, “sustainabilise” the energy matrix of the NWE region.
We work with local partners, but for a project like this it's important to look further afield. Research and technology work best when we share global expertise, so working with partners across the European Union makes the project more likely to succeed and have implications for wider use.
Don't reinvent something that's already happening, look for something that can make a tangible difference. Our research is not only new, there's a huge gap waiting for projects like this. GENCOMM could help communities across Northern Ireland, and much further afield, to take up new, cleaner fuel types and avoid fossil fuels.