Element 2, the leading hydrogen infrastructure company in the UK, has partnered with Anglian Water to pioneer the production of fuel cell grade hydrogen using wastewater. 

This initiative, set to start in Cambridgeshire this summer, will see Element 2 purchasing hydrogen generated by a new electrolyser at Anglian Water’s Milton Road water recycling site in Cambridge and supplying it to hydrogen-powered vehicles.


Source: Element 2

The production of hydrogen will be part of the innovative Triple Carbon Reduction Project, funded through Ofwat’s Water Breakthrough Challenge. This collaborative project aims to minimise carbon emissions in the water recycling process. To achieve this, an integrated electrolyser system will be introduced as part of the water pre-treatment process, generating green hydrogen and oxygen.

Starting from July 2023, it is projected up to 91kg of fuel cell grade hydrogen, suitable for hydrogen vehicles, will be produced each day at 100% runtime.

Element 2 will provide advanced storage solutions for the hydrogen produced at Anglian Water’s site in Cambridgeshire. Subsequently, the hydrogen will be transported to Element 2’s network of hydrogen refueling stations across the UK. This supply chain will cater to Element 2’s customer base, which includes hydrogen fleet owners and operators. Moreover, it will support hydrogen engine development and facilitate trials of new fuel cell vehicles as they enter UK roads. The hydrogen will primarily benefit trucks, vans, and buses, says the company.

In collaboration with Anglian Water, Element 2 will ensure the design, installation, and commissioning of the integrated electrolyser system adhere to safety standards and facilitate the efficient transfer, storage, and collection of hydrogen. Furthermore, Element 2 will work closely with Anglian Water to quantify the environmental advantages of the trial.

“This partnership is a significant milestone for the production of hydrogen using water in the UK and will help accelerate the decarbonisation of trucks and commercial vehicles on the roads. We work with a range of local suppliers in the UK’s hydrogen sector, ensuring we champion the circular economy with partnerships like the Anglian Water hydrogen production project, and establishing flexible supply chains as we build the UK’s network of hydrogen refuelling stations and solutions.” said Brendan Bilton, chief technology officer at Element 2.

“We are excited to work with Element 2 to ensure the safe and efficient removal of hydrogen from our demonstration plant in such a novel way. Using a process byproduct to aid the decarbonisation of vehicles has real synergy with the objectives of the Triple Carbon Reduction project to reduce the emissions generated through the water treatment process.” said Giulia Pizzagalli, Innovation Projects Manager at Anglian Water