Colruyt Group has opened its first public hydrogen filling station. From now on, customers can buy conventional and green fuels at the DATS 24 filling station in Halle (Dassenveld), as well as 100% green hydrogen, produced using renewable electricity from energy specialist Eoly. The integration of a hydrogen pump in a “traditional” filling station is unique in Europe and Colruyt Group believes that hydrogen can play an important role in making mobility and energy supplies more sustainable.
“The new hydrogen filling station is unique in Europe because it offers green hydrogen as well as all the other fuels, including electricity, CNG, petrol, diesel and AdBlue,” said Jef Colruyt, CEO of Colruyt Group. “This first public hydrogen filling station is certainly not an isolated case. Over the next five years, Colruyt Group intends to invest an extra 35 million euros in the hydrogen economy, including four new hydrogen filling stations.”
Since 2004, Colruyt Group has invested 6 million euros in innovative hydrogen projects. For example, the group has been producing green hydrogen at the Dassenveld site for some years now. The distribution centre has 75 hydrogen forklift trucks. In addition, hydrogen is used for 13 passenger cars, which are used within the group. In France and Belgium, Colruyt Group also invests in hydrogen applications for heavy transport. Together with partners Fluxys and Parkwind, the group is also working on a power-to-gas installation to convert green electricity into green hydrogen on an industrial scale as a buffer for fluctuations in (offshore) wind energy.
DATS 24 will continue to systematically increase its network for alternative fuels. In the meantime, 59 filling stations are now equipped with a CNG pump and 61 shops and 2 central buildings have electric charging stations. In 2019, the fuel specialist plans to open a second hydrogen filling station in Wilrijk.
Geert Bourgeois, Minister-President of Flanders, fully supports the initiative: “The opening of a public hydrogen filling station on the basis of locally produced wind and solar energy is a new step for Colruyt Group on its way to sustainable mobility. Flanders has ambitious goals for making the switch to sustainable energy and clean mobility. By 2020, we want 20 hydrogen filling stations. I have good hope that we will succeed.”
Flemish minister of Energy Bart Tommelein: “The Flemish government strongly believes in the possibilities of hydrogen: for transport, for energy storage, for the economy as a whole. A filling station that offers all fuels, including conventional fuels, CNG, electricity and green hydrogen, familiarizes consumers with all the current possibilities. These integrated filling stations can persuade people to consider or buy a greener or even zero-emission car. Colruyt Group’s efforts in this area are unique in Europe and help to accelerate the energy transition.”
Source: Colruyt Group