• London’s famous double decker buses turn to hydrogen
• O&G junior and renewables hopeful Pilot Energy raises $8m

For Australians from Sydney to Perth feeling the pinch of lockdowns and restrictions, the idea of riding a double-decker bus in London is a pretty foreign concept right now.

When you can make it over there’s a fair chance your ride will be a lot greener, with London Mayor Sadiq Khan launching the first 20 hydrogen-fuelled buses and a “state of the art” five-minute fuelling station provided by hydrogen tech developer Nel.

The 20 hydrogen fuel cell buses are the latest green edition to the British capital’s famous tourist fleet, with 500 electric buses also on the road.

The new vehicles will be powered initially by hydrogen extracted from an industrial chlori-alkali plant, but are set to transition their source of fuel to green hydrogen produced from electrolysis powered by an offshore wind farm from as early as 2023.

The city plans to have emissions free public transport by 2030.

Moves are afoot to up the pace of electrification and uptake of hydrogen in Australian public transport, although hydrogen still has a long way to go to be a cost competitive fuel sources with diesel and gas.

New South Wales is planning to progressively electrify its public transport fleet of 8000 buses over the next decade, while Transit Systems, which services metro bus contracts across the country has ordered hydrogen-fuelled buses to rollout in Australia.


Pilot raises $8m to chart path to ASX trade

Oil and gas and green, or in Scott Morrison’s terms ‘clean’ hydrogen, are the strange bedfellows nestling up to each other in the portfolios of a number of junior energy companies.

Despite the logical friction between non-renewable energy companies and renewables advocates, many have made the point that the transition to any sort of hydrogen economy will in some way shape or form use existing gas infrastructure and engineering knowledge to get there.

Take, for instance, the progressive incorporation of hydrogen into existing gas pipelines.

Case in point is Pilot Energy (ASX: PGY), another ASX-listed energy junior reading the room and announcing its plans to engage in the ‘energy transition’.

The company has been suspended from trade for a few months as it beds down a diverse market re-entry plan that includes a stake in Triangle Energy’s (ASX: TEG) Cliff Head oil field, via the acquisition of junior partner Royal Energy, and a swag of renewables and hydrogen projects that run the colour spectrum from blue to green.

It has submitted a grant funding application with the Federal Government for carbon capture & storage and blue hydrogen projects in WA’s Mid West and South West, with wind, solar and green hydrogen proposals all being evaluated.

Supporting its return to trade, Pilot announced a placement led by Bridge Street Capital Partners for $8 million today.

It plans to issue 133,333,333 shares in the company at 6 cents, a 26.8% discount to its last traded price in early February of 8.2c.

Pilot plans to recommence trading on August 11.


Pilot Energy share price today: