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Hydrogen energy
arrives in Paris

Air Liquide supports one of the
world’s first hydrogen-powered taxi fleets

For COP21, Air Liquide has installed the first hydrogen charging station in Paris, in partnership with the start-up STEP (Société du Taxi Electrique Parisien) and with the support of Paris City Hall. This station, located in the heart of the French capital, enables the deployment of "hype", a fleet of electric taxis powered by hydrogen. An innovative initiative that is destined to grow. In fact, hydrogen energy offers a powerful response to the challenges of sustainable mobility by reducing greenhouse gas emissions as well as local pollution in urban areas.

Taxis out of the ordinary

Inaugurated in December of 2015, the first hydrogen charging station installed by Air Liquide in central Paris – near the Pont de l'Alma, between the Champs-Elysées and the Eiffel Tower – is an opportunity for its partner STEP to create one of the very first hydrogen-powered electric taxi fleets in the world. Its name is "hype".

This fleet – initially composed of 5 Hyundai ix35 cars – should build up to 70 vehicles before end 2017 and to several hundred within 5 years. Besides, these vehicles will not add to the 17,000 taxis already in circulation in and around Paris: they are replacing gas and diesel powered cars.

A permanent network of hydrogen charging stations, designed primarily to refuel this fleet of taxis, will be gradually installed in the Greater Paris Area. 

Reduce pollution in cities with hydrogen energy

Hydrogen-powered electric vehicles offer a number of advantages: 

  • No greenhouse gas or particle emissions - just steam
  • Zero noise pollution 
  • Comfortable extended range - around 500 km
  • Rapid charge - between 3 and 5 minutes

As for Air Liquide, it masters the entire hydrogen supply chain, from production to storage and from distribution to the development of applications for end users. This initiative allows the Group to educate the public about the benefits of hydrogen as a clean energy for vehicles.

Starting 2016, a permanent network of hydrogen charging stations
With this fleet of hydrogen-powered electric taxis, Paris takes another step in the direction of the energy transition.


“This visionary innovation allows us to turn our backs to fossil fuels and enter the 21st century. We don’t have a planet B.”

Anne Hidalgo, Mayor of Paris

Blue Hydrogen: Air Liquide's commitment

Blue Hydrogen is an Air Liquide program whose goal is to gradually decarbonize its production of hydrogen dedicated to energy applications. In practical terms, Air Liquide has made a commitment to produce at least 50% of the hydrogen necessary for these applications through carbon-free processes by 2020 by combining:

  • Biogas reforming
  • The use of renewable energies, through water electrolysis
  • The use of technologies for the capture and upgrading of carbon emitted during the process of producing hydrogen from natural gas

Even when it is produced from natural gas, hydrogen is a virtuous energy: for equal distance traveled, hydrogen cars allow to reduce GHG emissions by 20% compared with internal combustion vehicles and don’t produce any fine particles.

Hydrogen energy: Air Liquide is committed to clean transportation

Interview with Pierre-Etienne Franc, Vice-president Air Liquide aB&T

Gradually decarbonizing our production of hydrogen dedicated to energy applications
Inauguration of the hydrogen charging station by Benoît Potier, Chairman and CEO of Air Liquide, and Anne Hidalgo, Mayor of Paris, on December 7, 2015.


  • Press release dated December 1, 2015

    PDF - 203.89 KB


Article published on November 03, 2017