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Unique investment to build Europe’s first network of green hydrogen filling stations

Press Release  - Nilsson Energy


Swedish investment company Qarlbo makes a unique investment to establish Sweden and Europe’s first network of filling stations for green hydrogen. 24 filling stations will be built with financial support from The Climate Leap (Klimatklivet). The investment is an important step for Sweden’s and the EU’s plans to establish an infrastructure for fossil-free fuels.

The joint investment with The Climate Leap is estimated to be a total of SEK 515 million. Qarlbo is managing the project through the company REH2 and Nilsson Energy, a subsidiary of Qarlbo, has together with REH2’ CEO Christoffer Löfström initiated the project. The stations will be built at Rasta’s service facilities, offering refuelling, and charging of green hydrogen for primarily heavy vehicles such as trucks, buses, and cars. Rasta is Sweden’s biggest truck stop, which is visited daily by approximately 15 000 heavy vehicles.

“Through this initiative, we want to contribute to the climate transition,” says Per-Arne Blomquist, CEO Qarlbo. “A network of filling stations is a prerequisite for hauliers to be able to switch from fossil-fuelled to hydrogen-powered vehicles. But if there are not enough hydrogen-powered vehicles in traffic, it is difficult to justify investments in new infrastructure. At the same time, investments in infrastructure are being held back by the lack of vehicles. Now we are removing that obstacle.”

In its initial phase, the venture entails plans for nine hydrogen filling stations in Sweden by 2024. First out is Mariestad. The remaining 15 stations will be completed by the end of 2025.

In line with Sweden’s and the EU’s ambitions to accelerate the transition to a fossil-free transport system, the project is co-financed by public and private capital. In addition to a direct investment of SEK 161 million, Qarlbo is a long-term guarantor of the project and expects to have to cover a number of years’ operating deficit. The Swedish Environmental Protection Agency has, within the framework of The Climate Leap, granted support for the project totalling SEK 354 million. Qarlbo initially covers all costs in the project and the support from The Climate Leap is successively paid out as the filling stations are completed.

To achieve the EU’s climate goals, emissions need to be reduced dramatically, which, among other things, requires investments in green hydrogen, filling stations, and hydrogen-powered vehicles. The EU estimates the need for 1,500 filling stations by 2030, which requires that public and private actors collaborate and contribute financially.

The initiators hope that the investment in a network of filling stations will accelerate the development of hydrogen-powered vehicles and that buyers of transport will start making demands on fossil-free transport.

“Our investment is unique for Europe. While there are hydrogen filling stations in other countries, Sweden has the prerequisites to deliver a network of hydrogen filling stations with only green hydrogen. There is no one else who can provide this today”, says Martina Wettin, CEO Nilsson Energy.

By establishing the filling stations at Rasta’s facilities, the investment costs can be reduced at the same time as there are already trained personnel on-site who are used and licensed to handle various forms of fuel. Rasta will also become a part owner of REH2.

The Climate Leap is The Swedish Environmental Protection Agency’s investment program dedicated to supporting local and regional initiatives that reduce greenhouse gas emissions. The invested funds must provide the greatest possible reduction in emissions per invested Swedish Krona. Support is only granted to measures that contribute to increasing the pace of achieving the climate goals and that would not otherwise have been implemented. The Swedish Environmental Protection Agency has by October, within the framework of The Climate Leap, granted investments totalling 7,7 billion kronor.

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