Both UK-based, Mace and AFC Energy have joined together in a UK-first strategic partnership to decarbonise the construction industry using hydrogen power.

London-based global consultancy and construction firm Mace and Surrey-based developer of hydrogen-powered alkaline fuel cells AFC Energy will be partnering in the installation of zero emission hydrogen generators instead of the commonly used highly polluting diesel generators found on construction sites, both in the UK and internationally.

The partners have set aside early 2022 as the target date for commissioning the first on-site AFC Energy H-PowerTM systems.

This partnership is a result of Mace’s pledge to cutback carbon emissions from its operations by 10% year-on-year and to eliminate diesel generators from its construction projects by 2026.

While the construction sector is responsible for 38% of energy related emissions worldwide, London experiences 14.5% of the most harmful emissions, mostly PM2.5 from the diesel generators on construction sites.

Apart from pioneering AFC Energy’s fuel cell system throughout Mace’s construction sites, both firms will work with the government and plant hire companies to advocate the benefits of hydrogen-based fuels, in order for the construction industry to sustainably do away with the dependence on diesel.

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Instead of directly buying generators, constructors are hiring on-site diesel gensets through plant hire businesses that supply construction sites with temporary power.

Mace Group chief executive Mark Reynolds said: “One of our strategic priorities as an organisation is the pursuit of a sustainable world – and to make that a reality we know we must change how we power our construction sites. This partnership with AFC Energy will hopefully be a significant step on our journey to removing diesel from our projects – helping to reduce emissions, pollutants and noise.”

AFC Energy chief executive officer Adam Bond said: “A sustainable construction industry and the need for improved urban air quality is driving growing contractor interest in transitioning away from diesel generators in meeting today’s temporary power needs. AFC Energy’s zero emission, hydrogen fuelled power generator addresses this growing demand for cleaner power.   

“Mace is leading the construction sector’s transition away from diesel to sustainable power generation and our partnership, the first of its kind in the UK, will highlight to Government and industry just how zero-emission technology can be adopted to significantly accelerate decarbonisation and meet Net Zero aspirations.”


Mace and AFC Energy have joined together in a UK-first strategic partnership to decarbonise the construction industry using hydrogen power. Credit: John Cameron/Unsplash.