Transport sector takes prominent role in National Hydrogen Strategy

On 19 September, 2023, around 300 delegates from politics, industry and science discussed the future of hydrogen in mobility at the BMDV (Federal Ministry for Digital and Transport) expert conference of the same name. At a parliamentary evening the night before, there was a podium discussion and an opportunity to network.

The conference was opened by Michael Theurer, Parliamentary State Secretary at the Federal Ministry for Digital and Transport, along with Kurt-Christoph von Knobelsdorff, CEO and Spokesperson of NOW GmbH. Following a welcome address by Katherina Reiche, Chairperson of the National Hydrogen Council (Nationaler Wasserstoffrat (NWR)) and Chairperson of the Board of Westenergie, as well as a keynote speech by Dr. Manfred Schuckert, Head of Regulatory Strategy und International Hydrogen Strategy at Daimler Truck, presentations and discussion panels examined all aspects of the future of hydrogen mobility. In addition to generation, infrastructure and market ramp-up, there was a focus on the role of municipalities and the different applications for roads, rail, aviation and shipping. The podium discussion held the evening before included a practical check of the National Hydrogen Strategy (Nationale Wasserstoffstrategie (NWS).

Dr. Volker Wissing, Federal Minister for Digital and Transport: “Hydrogen plays an important role in climate and industrial policy. It helps us to tackle one of the greatest challenges of our time: the transformation of our mobility system to climate-friendly drives. In updating the NWS, we have put the transport sector centre stage and set ourselves ambitious goals. We want to continue, for example, to drive forward the expansion of the hydrogen refuelling station network, create the required framework conditions and draw up a master plan for hydrogen and fuel cell technologies in transport. In this way, we contribute to achieving our climate goals and at the same time, leverage the enormous potential for German industry.”

The BMDV expert conference on hydrogen in mobility was organized by NOW GmbH, which coordinates the implementation of different funding programmes on behalf of the BMDV. In previous years, the conference was known as the German Hydrogen General Assembly. This year, there was an increased focus on mobility and thus it changed not only its focus, but also its title.

Kurt-Christoph von Knobelsdorff, CEO and Spokesperson of NOW GmbH: “Given the huge challenges, technological neutrality remains the only correct approach to achieving climate protection goals in the transport sector. Today’s conference has shown that using hydrogen and fuel cell technology in mobility provides a wide range of options for decarbonization, also in road transport.”

With the National Innovation Programme for Hydrogen and Fuel Cell Technology (NIP), the federal government has been pursuing the goal of accelerating the market readiness of hydrogen and fuel cell technologies in various application areas since 2006. The extension of the programme (NIP II) was adopted in 2016 for another 10 years. Coordinated by NOW GmbH and implemented by Project Management Jülich (PtJ), the programme is primarily based on supporting research and development as well as market activation. It therefore makes an important contribution to expanding the German hydrogen refuelling station infrastructure through funding calls for public hydrogen refuelling stations. This expansion is currently gaining increased political support through the Alternative Fuel Infrastructure Regulation (AFIR) and the goals of the NWS.

NOW GmbH is providing the following publications as part of the conference:


© Franz Josef