The Port of Los Angeles (POLA) is launching a new era of pollution-free goods movement with the debut of five new hydrogen-powered fuel cell electric vehicles (FCEV) and the grand opening of two hydrogen fueling stations.
Under the US$82.5 million Shore-to-Store (S2S) project, more than a dozen public and private sector partners have teamed up for a 12-month demonstration of the zero-emissions Class 8 trucks and will expand the project to include five more hydrogen-fueled heavy-duty trucks, two battery-electric yard tractors, and two battery-electric forklifts, according to an announcement.
The port said the demonstration is designed to advance the Port’s Clean Air Action Plan goals and help California achieve statewide climate change, air quality improvement and sustainability targets for reducing greenhouse gases and toxic air emissions.
The project is designed to assess the operational and technical feasibility of the vehicles in a heavy-duty setting, as well as to expand infrastructure to support hydrogen throughout the region, according to POLA.
“Transporting goods between our Port and the Inland Empire is the first leg of this next journey toward a zero-emissions future,” said Port of Los Angeles Executive Director, Gene Seroka, who went on to add, “This project is a model for developing and commercialising the next generation of clean trucks and cargo-handling equipment for the region and beyond. Just as the air we breathe extends beyond the Port’s footprint, so should the clean air and economic benefits we believe this project will yield.”
The Port’s technology development partners are Toyota Motor North America, which designed and built the powertrain’s fuel cell electric power supply system; Kenworth Truck Co., which designed and built the Class 8 trucks with Toyota’s fuel cell electric system; and Shell Oil Products US (Shell), which designed, built and will operate the project’s two new high-capacity hydrogen fueling stations in Wilmington and Ontario.
Additionally, partners operating the trucks are Toyota Logistics Services (TLS), UPS, and trucking companies Total Transportation Services Inc. (TTSI) and Southern Counties Express (SCE).
“By utilizing this technology, port operators like our own Toyota Logistics Services (TLS) can utilize a zero-emissions and scalable solution for CO2 reductions, which will contribute to cleaner air at the port and the surrounding communities where TLS operates,” commented Bob Carter, Executive Vice President, Sales, Toyota Motor North America.
Gas and technology leader Air Liquide is also participating as a fuel supplier. The Port of Hueneme will partner on drayage runs and serve as the site for testing the zero-emissions yard tractors.
Shell believes hydrogen is a promising solution both in terms of immediate improvements of air quality as well as long term climate targets, according to Paul Bogers, Vice President of Hydrogen for Shell, who stated, “That’s why we are working with truck manufacturers, fleets, governments and others to coordinate hydrogen infrastructure investments in high-traffic freight areas like the Port of Los Angeles, Port of Long Beach, the Los Angeles basin and the Inland Empire.”
The California Air Resources Board (CARB) is supporting the project with a matching grant of US$41.1 million, while project partners are contributing the remaining $41.4 million in financial and in-kind support.
Other public sector partners are the South Coast Air Quality Management District (AQMD), serving as a project advisor; the National Renewable Energy Laboratory, which will collect and analyze project data; and the Coalition for a Safe Environment, representing the community.
The vehicles’ duty cycles will consist of local pickup and delivery and drayage near the Port and short regional haul applications in the Inland Empire. Partners will study the technical feasibility of hydrogen-fueled tractors and battery-electric cargo handling equipment operating under the rigorous demands of the Southern California market. At the same time, they will measure the reduction of nitrogen oxide, particulate matter, and greenhouse gas emissions, as well as other pollutants.
The Port of Los Angeles S2S Project, whose planning began in 2018, is part of California Climate Investments, a statewide initiative that puts billions of Cap-and-Trade dollars to work reducing greenhouse gas emissions, strengthening the economy, and improving public health and the environment — particularly in disadvantaged communities.
The project is one of 16 demonstrations underway at the Port of Los Angeles aiming to accelerate near-zero and zero-emissions solutions for moving cargo.