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Pierre Etienne Franc: re-elected as chair of the European platform for the development of hydrogen and fuel cell batteries

Today in Brussels, Pierre Etienne Franc, Vice President of advanced Business & Technologies for the Air Liquide Group, was unanimously re-elected Chair of the Governing Board of the Fuel Cells and Hydrogen Joint Undertaking (FCH JU), a public private partnership conducted by the industry in connection with the Horizon 2020 program. This platform enables the sector to co-finance almost 1.3 billion Euros worth of projects over the next 7 years.

Used in the fuel cell, hydrogen combines with oxygen from the air to produce electricity, with water as the only by-product. In a world where energy has become a major driver, hydrogen shows great promise as a potentially key vector of the energy transition.

In 2050, the European goal of reducing greenhouse gas emissions (GGE) by 80% will in fact require that the transportation and energy sectors drastically reduce their emissions. Both hydrogen and fuel cell technologies support this ambition by offering a unique solution for the storage and conversion of energy.

Public and private partners implement ambitious and collaborative approaches that will provide the industrial backbone for Europe in order to successfully rise to the energy transition challenge.

“I am convinced that hydrogen is a pivotal solution to succeed in the energy transition. The financing of its deployment is a major challenge for ensuring that market maturity is reached. Structures like the FCH JU type platform and the development of financing, adapted to the specifics of the energy transition, will allow us to maintain the momentum needed to make this change, a source of jobs, technologies and sustainable growth. Building tomorrow’s growth requires close cooperation between regulators, public financing, and private commitments. The platform is an excellent example of that.” noted Pierre Etienne Franc.

The appointment follows Pierre Etienne Franc earlier election as Chairman of NEW-IG


The Fuel Cells and Hydrogen Joint Undertaking (FCH JU) is a unique public private partnership supporting research, technological development and demonstration (RTD) activities in Fuel Cells and Hydrogen technologies in Europe. Its aim is to accelerate the market introduction of these technologies, realizing their potential as an instrument in achieving a carbon-lean energy system.

The three members of the FCH JU are the European Union represented by the European Commission, fuel cell and hydrogen industries represented by the NEW Industry Grouping and the research community represented by the Research Grouping N.ERGHY.