Origin of the Bavarian Hydrogen Initiative (wiba)

Bavarian State Ministry of Economic Affairs, Infrastructure, Transport and Technology


In 1995 the Bavarian State Ministry of Economic Affairs, Infrastructure, Transport and Technology had set up four teams to discuss the Bavarian activities in the field of hydrogen technology. In cooperation with numerous companies, which have many years of experience in this field, the current state-of-the-art and the necessary short- and long- term measures were shown and analysed. The Hydrogen-Initiative Bavaria, which was founded in 1996 by Minister of State, Dr. Otto Wiesheu, emanated from these work groups.

Prof. Dr.-Ing. Ulrich Wagner was appointed as the coordinator of the Hydrogen Initiative Bavaria. The coordination centre was installed at the Research Institute for Energy Economy (Forschungsstelle für Energiewirtschaft, abbr.: FfE).

On June 26th 1997 Dr. Otto Wiesheu announced in his government declaration “With new energy into the future” that 50 m Marks (25.6 m Euros) shall be provided in the future to support hydrogen-related projects.

Some excerpts (translated):

“[…] for us, it is important to promote new technological developments, to improve our international competitiveness in the field of energy-technology, to utilise all niches, in which renewables and new energy technologies may be used reasonably to use the potentials of cost reduction and rationalisation [as far as regenerative energies are concerned] as well as to preparer its market launch and to ensure market shares early enough in order to maintain and create jobs.

[…] hydrogen allows, more than batteries, to store renewables and to provide them demand-orientated. Hydrogen makes renewables also available for the traffic. Hydrogen promises a growing market with good chances to export and secure jobs […]”

Since then about 45 projects with an overall project size of nearly 100 m Euros were funded by wiba.

The information flyer of the Hydrogen-Initiative Bavaria can be downloaded here.

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