Photo of Mo Vargas, CEO of BayoTech.

H2 View Interviews BayoTech CEO, Mo Vargas

Originally published by Molly Burgess, Managing Editor at H2View, on Dec 31, 2020 

2020 has certainly been a crazy one for on-site hydrogen generation specialist BayoTech. Filled with new partnerships, developments and ventures into new markets, the company has achieved a considerable amount, all whilst fighting the effects of Covid-19.

As part of the next instalment of H2 View’s A Christmas Twist: The 12 Days of Content, Mo Vargas, President and CEO of BayoTech talks about some of those ground-breaking partnerships, how the company has dealt with Covid-19 and future plans.

H2 View (H2V): What was a main focus for BayoTech in 2020?

Mo Vargas (MV): 2020 was all about growth for BayoTech and finding ways of getting things done though the pandemic. Over the past year we built an all-star team with significant industry and functional experience in addition to strong leadership on both the commercial and technical side of our business.

We signed over 20 authorised agents throughout the world to expand BayoTech’s global reach. We made numerous enhancements to our product offering, including our performance guarantee backed by Lloyds syndicate Argo, the BayoCare all-inclusive service and maintenance program, lease offerings backed by DLL, rental and gas-as-a-service options, which all provide significant value and flexibility for our customers. On top of that, we’ve signed 10 agreements for exciting hydrogen development projects around the world. It’s been an amazing year for BayoTech and we believe that the best is yet to come.

H2VBayoTech announced many new partnerships in 2020 – congratulations. Can you tell us about some of these exciting partnerships and why they are so significant to both BayoTech and the hydrogen economy?

MV: BayoTech is very strategic about the partnerships that we choose, and our intention is to focus our work in each area with a main partner where we can maximise value to each other. This also allows us to move faster in developing economical low carbon application solutions for our customers. I would like to highlight three of these partnerships today:

In the transportation sector we have a partnership with HYZON Motors. HYZON is a world leading fuel-cell mobility technology company, that is on the leading-edge of the hydrogen economy. HYZON is planning a broad rollout of hydrogen refuelling stations to support the widespread deployment of zero-emissions hydrogen fuel cell powered commercial vehicles, including heavy duty trucks, buses and coaches. These vehicles need reliable access to low-cost, low-carbon hydrogen to enable this growth. Companies like HYZON are taking action to accelerate the transition to zero-emission transportation and BayoTech offers a great option to scale hydrogen supply while keeping costs low. We’re excited for what this partnership will bring.

Another partnership that holds high potential is with New Mexico Gas Company (NMGC), an EMERA subsidiary. We are exploring hydrogen injection into the natural gas grid, hydrogen fuelling infrastructure development and piloting carbon capture and sequestration technologies. We really like the repeatability of this model and being able to help natural gas utilities around the world evolve into their new role in the energy transition.

We are also seeing more and more established companies in the oil and gas sector looking to diversify their existing operations, decarbonise, and participate in the hydrogen economy. We are working with IGas Energy in the UK. IGas’ leadership is a great example of where locally produced resources can be used in the energy transition to significantly reduce the carbon intensity associated with long distance transportation of hydrogen, support local jobs and provide the UK with low-cost hydrogen to accelerate the new economy.

H2V: Do you think the hydrogen movement, which had gathered so much momentum, will be adversely affected by Covid-19? Could it provide an enforced opportunity to further the separation from fossil fuels?

MV: I think there was a lot of concern at the beginning that the Covid-19 pandemic would negatively impact investment in hydrogen and hold back widespread adoption and commercial roll-out. It hasn’t been an easy road, but the hydrogen sector has continued to gain momentum in spite of this.

In 2020 we’ve seen significant global investment in hydrogen, major announcements by governments supporting hydrogen deployment, and exciting projects being developed around the world – at the same time, some of the world’s largest economies have doubled down on the commitment to decarbonisation rather than backing away. There is a strong commitment globally to the clean energy transition and we’re seeing mainstream recognition that hydrogen plays a critical role.

I think BayoTech is a great example of how many companies in the hydrogen sector have adapted and continued to gain momentum during this difficult time. Inspite of the Covid-19 headwinds, we expanded our team over the last year, continue to thrive as a company, and made rapid progress both commercially and technically. I am proud of the BayoTech team who have proven to be resilient and adaptable in the face of a major challenge such as Covid-19.

H2V: What does BayoTech have planned for 2021?

MV: 2021 will be all about rapid growth and plant deployment at BayoTech. Our plan is to begin development and deployment of seven flagship BayoTech hydrogen generating facilities around the world. The selected markets are Southern California, Northern California, the UK, Europe, Korea, Japan and Australia. We’ve established a number of exciting partnerships for hydrogen development projects and our goal is to maximise value to our partners and execute on our project roadmap.

From a technology standpoint, we aim to continue to enhance our current product offering and accelerate the development and commercialisation of our next generation systems capable of producing 5,000, 10,000 and 30,000 kg of hydrogen per day.

H2V: Finally, in the spirit of the time of year and theme of the series, if you could have one hydrogen related thing for Christmas, what would it be and why?

MV: I’d love to get a Hyperion XP-1 hydrogen-powered hypercar for Christmas! I’m not sure that will fit in Santa’s sleigh though.

All joking aside, my Christmas wish is to continue to see concrete action being taken to accelerate the global hydrogen economy. First-mover markets, like California, are setting an excellent example of what is possible, and I hope to see this trend continue globally. California has enacted regulations requiring transit agencies to transition to zero emissions and hydrogen fuel cell cars and buses are being deployed across the state. I’d love to see the US as a whole and other countries follow this example and further develop the investment and public policies needed to achieve future climate targets and secure a leadership position in the global hydrogen economy.

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