Japanese automaker Toyota and trucking company Kenworth have inked a deal to produce 10 hydrogen fuel cell trucks using Kenworth T680 trucks built onto Toyota FCEV powertrains.
The deal forms part of a $US41 million ($A57 million) Zero and Near-Zero Emissions Freight Facilities (ZANZEFF) grant, which was awarded to the Port of Los Angeles by the California Air Resources Board (CARB) in August 2018 for a zero emission “Shore to Shore” freight project.
Under the project, the Port of Los Angeles plans to use the FCEV Kenworth T680 trucks, which would have a range of 300 miles (482km), to haul goods from the LA basin to inland cities like Ontario and San Bernardino, California.
Kenworth GM Mike Dozier hails the agreement as a turning point for the trucking company to become an integral player in the future of clean transport in the region.
“This is an excellent opportunity for Kenworth and Toyota to work together to both explore and drive the development of advanced zero emission technologies that will play a critical role in the commercial transportation of the future,” he said in a statement.
Bob Carter, executive VP of Toyota in North America stressed in his own comments that the project was “not just a science experiment.”
“The goal is to make a difference in society. To remove pollution and improve the air quality in and around the Port of Los Angeles,” he said.
California has been a leader in the US on carbon reduction; it was the first state to set a goal for reducing greenhouse gas emissions, passing the California Global Warming Solutions Act in 2006 with a goal of returning to 1990 GHG levels by 2020 (next year!), and 35 per cent less than 1990 levels by 2035.
The Port of Los Angeles claims on its website that it actually reached the 2020 goal seven years ahead of schedule.
The ZANZEFF grants, totalling over $US83 million ($A115 million) in all, include a range of projects that will also see hydrogen fueling stations, fuel cell electric tractors and vans, electric forklifts and other zero emissions cargo handling equipment deployed across Californian ports, and will help the state further work towards those goals.
Bridie Schmidt is lead reporter for The Driven, sister site of Renew Economy. She specialises in writing about new technology and has been writing about electric vehicles for two years. She has a keen interest in the role that zero emissions transport has to play in sustainability and is co-organiser of the Northern Rivers Electric Vehicle Forum.