Hydrogen powered aircraft enter Irish aviation sector

  • ASL Aviation signs partnership with Universal Hydrogen
  • Significant step towards reducing carbon emissions


Fianna Fáil Spokesperson on Tourism and Aviation Cathal Crowe has hailed the announcement of plans for hydrogen powered cargo aircraft in Ireland as the beginning of the decarbonisation of the aviation sector.

Irish company ASL Aviation Holdings has announced the plans today, in collaboration with US firm Universal Hydrogen.

The move will see Universal Hydrogen conversion kits installed on the existing fleet of ATR 72 planes owned by ASL and operated on services for its major customers throughout Europe.

“Today’s announcement really is a landmark one for Irish and European aviation,” said Deputy Crowe.

“This move will mean a significant step towards net-zero emissions as soon as it’s practicable.

“While today’s announcement is very much cargo-focused, it gives huge hope that we will see a similar move for passenger airlines in the not-so-distant future.

“Before the Covid-19 pandemic, commercial aviation accounted for about 2.5% of global emissions of carbon dioxide – to some, this probably sounds like a small proportion of the whole, but it is more than the whole of Germany (2.2%) – and that’s not even the whole story.

“I welcome this announcement and I firmly believe that making Ireland a centre for this cutting-edge technology could create a huge amount of potential investment across the island.

“I would also hope that as ASL continues to grow thanks to this partnership, that Shannon Airport continues to benefit from their operations – as they already perform a lot of their business from our airport.

“The climate emergency is well documented at this stage and it’s been a challenge for this generation to move to a more sustainable and tackling aviation in this way is one of the most exciting developments we’ve seen in quite some time.”