Public awareness and social acceptance regarding FCH technologies have an essential role on the market uptake of FCH applications, as they foster the commercial demand and strengthen the integration and deployment of available and future FCH technologies in both public and private sectors.
FCH technologies have positive impact on increasing the use of renewable resources and renewable energy and on the reduction of CO2 emissions. Moreover, FCH technologies are the ideal link to couple different sectors of the energy mix such as the electricity grid, gas grid, etc. strengthening the entire energy sector. The benefits of implementing hydrogen as energy carrier and fuel cells into the energy system must be known and communicated to the society.
Nevertheless, the majority of FCH technologies are not well known by the public and they are not mentioned in books and lectures. Overcoming this gap is a major European challenge. To address this, a “bottom up approach” starting at pupils (primary and secondary schools) appears to be one of the most promising approaches to transfer the essential knowledge to the public. On one hand, this ensures the education of the highly qualified workforce needed by the FCH industry in the coming years, and on the other hand, increases the public awareness about the role of FCH technologies to achieve the energy transition.
Previous FCH JU activities on education and training have targeted specific groups i.e. undergraduates, postgraduates and professionals (HYPROFESSIONALS, TRAINHY-PROF, HyFacts, Knowhy, HyResponse). Targeting primary and secondary schools and their teachers will ensure that FCH technologies are presented within the energy context among other technologies generally known (PV, wind, batteries…) at a very early stage of education. This will benefit beyond the school gates, e.g. friends, parents and relatives and this will bring opportunities to initiate interest to pupils to be informed and well educated on the functioning and possibilities of FCH technologies before they chose their carrier choices.
The project is expected to provide a set of educational materials (documents, presentations, fact sheets, practical exercises, etc.) adapted to the respective level of pupils to follow up successfully the “bottom up approach” of communication and dissemination of knowledge about FCH technologies.
The project is expected to build communication channels down to schools, teachers and education and public authorities in order to ensure the alignment of the education materials on national levels and level of education (primary and secondary). The project should connect with local, regional and national organisations to identify and engage schools in a programme of workshops or educational activities and should identify key local stakeholders to be part of the educational programme delivery. Appropriate channels may include national, regional and city hydrogen FCH associations and partnerships, existing education networks, etc.
As an essential part to the success of the project, a specific project website should be developed as a “connecting point” to exchange educational materials and to assist communication generally (e.g. by guidelines and instructions). The project website should also make more visible the FCH industry and its activities as well as research and development, providing further information on the technology.
To motivate pupils, an open contest should be organised to increase participation to the educational program, e.g. by offering an award to schools or classes in each respective country for the best “new idea on FCH application to contribute to fight the climate change”. The project should put in place a jury and the criteria to award the prices.
The project is expected to address the following activities:
The FCH 2 JU considers that proposals requesting a contribution of EUR 0.5 million per project would allow this specific challenge to be addressed appropriately. Nonetheless, this does not preclude submission and selection of proposals requesting other amounts.
A maximum of 1 project may be funded under this topic.
Expected duration: 2 years.
Type of action: Coordination and Support Action
The conditions related to this topic are provided in the chapter 3.3 and in the General Annexes to the Horizon 2020 Work Programme 2018– 2020 which apply mutatis mutandis.