HebCelt Festival to be powered by green H<sub>2</sub> from renewable electricity

A Harris-based clean power start-up is to provide zero emissions power for the iconic HebCelt Festival, which returns to the Outer Hebrides this summer in its 25th anniversary year (13-16 July 2022).

PlusZero, launched in 2021 by founder David Amos, is decarbonizing the events sector by replacing GHG-emitting diesel generators with portable, zero-carbon alternatives, powered by green H2 from renewable electricity generated on the Scottish islands.

HebCelt marks PlusZero’s first major event in 2022, with its innovative combustion-engine based generator providing clean power for the event’s Islands Stage, sourced from the company’s green H2 production facility in Stornoway.

The Islands Stage in the main arena area will use the zero-emissions energy for three days and nights, powering 12 different acts in what is a new evolution of the festival’s continued commitment to innovation and green energy. It is the first festival in Scotland to run a full stage consecutively for the duration of a whole event on green hydrogen.

In April, PlusZero powered up its green H2 production facility at Comhairle nan Eilean Siar's Creed Park, Stornoway, in a major progression for the company’s ambitions to transform the Western Isles into a leader in clean energy production. Utilizing a process known as electrolysis, PlusZero generates green H2 from surplus electricity produced by local onshore renewable power from the Western Isles.

“For 25 years, the HebCelt Festival has brought together Scotland’s best traditional musicians and creatives to celebrate our shared musical heritage and culture,” said HebCelt Festival, David Amos, Managing Director at PlusZero. “To provide zero-emissions power for this iconic event that has such a strong community identity, using green H2 produced here in the Outer Hebrides, is a source of great pride for PlusZero.

“Though rooted in tradition, the festival’s commitments to environmental well-being speak to the progressiveness of the Western Isles community. PlusZero’s partnership with HebCelt demonstrates that we can share in the joy of live music events whilst at the same time minimizing the impact of their footprint on our precious environment - preserving it for generations to come.”

“HebCelt has always been committed to finding ways to lessen our carbon emissions and to have an environmentally sensitive event. To be able to make this significant step, which will see truly green energy used for one of our stages throughout the festival, is very welcome. The fact that we can source the power from a local provider who in turn is using renewable energy in the production process makes this development all the more attractive,” said Caroline Maclennan, Festival Director for HebCelt.

“We are grateful to EventScotland whose funding helps to make this possible. Their continued support has been vital to our bouncing back from the pandemic. We are also delighted to be working with PlusZero who are breaking new ground with their innovative technology and ideas. We are sure our festival-goers will be excited to hear that we are doing everything we can for the environment.”

Paul Bush OBE, VisitScotland’s Director of Events said, “HebCelt has been central to the Outer Hebrides’ cultural offering for a quarter of a century now and it’s fantastic to see them, not only mark this anniversary in style, but do so with such a focus on green energy. Scotland has an international reputation for its natural heritage, so it is important that events work in tandem with wider efforts in these areas offering sustainability for both the environment and the future of the industry.”