NEW DELHI: India's first green hydrogen fuel cell bus was put on the national capital's roads and flagged off by the Minister of Petroleum and Natural Gas, Hardeep Singh Puri, on Monday.

Fifteen more such buses will be deployed in Delhi, Haryana and Uttar Pradesh states after operational trials of those vehicles are completed, the Ministry of Petroleum and Natural Gas said in a press release.

Puri said green hydrogen fuel cell buses are "the most environmentally friendly mode of transportation compared to conventional buses. With three times the energy density and the absence of harmful emissions, hydrogen shines as a cleaner, more efficient choice to meet energy requirements."

The new bus undertook its maiden journey yesterday on the arterial road that connects Rashtrapati Bhavan, the Indian President's estate and India Gate, an iconic emblem of national pride at the end of that road.

Green hydrogen fuel cell buses convert hydrogen and oxygen to water and liberate electrical energy in the form of electrons.

"They have the potential to play a key role in low-carbon and self-reliant economic pathways," the press release said. "Green hydrogen can enable utilization of renewable energy resources across regions, seasons, and sectors, feeding multiple usage streams, either as a fuel or an industrial feedstock."

India's state-owned petroleum company, Indian Oil, has a state-of-the-art research and development facility in Faridabad near Delhi to explore refuelling green hydrogen produced from electrolysis using solar panels.

Puri predicted that emerging fuels like hydrogen and biofuels will account for 25 percent of global incremental energy demand growth over the next two decades.

"With one of the largest synchronous power grids in the world, India hopes to be a global champion in the production and export of hydrogen and is set to emerge as a hub for green hydrogen," Puri concluded.