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Balfour to convert highway maintenance trucks to hydrogen

Balfour Beatty has received a Scottish government grant to fund the conversion of four road maintenance vehicles to run off hydrogen as well as diesel.

Balfour Beatty grittersBalfour Beatty is the first construction company to secure funding from the Scottish government’s Emerging Energies Technology Fund.

The contractor is getting more than £240,000 match-funding to retrofit two gritters and two maintenance vehicles. Once retrofitted, the vehicles will be trialled on the Connect Roads M77/Glasgow southern orbital project.

The trial is expected to deliver a 40% reduction in carbon emissions from each of the four retrofitted vehicles, with the aim of providing a blueprint for the conversion of all Balfour Beatty owned fleet in the future, the company says.

The Connect Roads M77/GSO depot in East Renfrewshire will also become Scotland’s first ‘hydrogen construction hub’, where Balfour Beatty will host quarterly meetings to brief customers, suppliers and other stakeholders on the progress and performance of the four retrofitted vehicles. Balfour Beatty regional managing director Hector MacAulay said: “Reducing emissions from plant on sites is a key challenge faced by the entire construction and infrastructure industry. It is a challenge that must be faced collectively if we are to drive down our emissions and play our part in reaching the Scottish government’s net zero by 2045 target.

“Whilst electric solutions are starting to enter the market, they are not yet a realistic option for heavy plant. Dual fuel represents an alternative solution, and we are looking forward to seeing the benefits that this trial will deliver, as we look to develop a practical solution for our industry, alongside the Scottish government.”

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