The Port of Los Angeles said today it has tentatively received $41 million from the California Air Resources Board (CARB) to develop, along with three private-sector partners, a fuel-cell powered electric network for heavy-duty trucks to ship goods from the port to final destinations.
The funding, which will come out of CARB's California Climate Investments Program and must still be formally approved by the CARB board, would cover half of the cost of the project's first phase. The partners, oil giant Shell, vehicle maker Toyota Motor Corp. and truck manufacturer Kenworth, a unit of Paccar Inc., would kick in $41.4 million in matching grants, bringing the phase's total cost to nearly $82.5 million. Formal approval is expected in the next 30 to 60 days, according to Phillip Sanfield, a port spokesman.
The project includes a large-scale "shore to store" transportation plan and a hydrogen fuel-cell-electric technology framework for freight facilities. The initiative will help reduce emissions by 465 metric tons of Greenhouse Gas, and 0.72 weighted tons of nitrous oxide and particular matter, the port said.
Port Executive Director Gene Seroka said the CARB grant provides "critically needed funding support to develop and commercialize the next generation of clean port equipment and drayage truck, as well as the infrastructure to support it."
The port will develop the project in several phases that will cover southern California, the Central Coast Area, and Merced County, located in the San Joaquin valley in the state's center. The first phase is designed to launch a class of goods-moving vehicles that will reduce emissions in designated communities. Kenworth and Toyota will develop 10 hydrogen fuel-cell-electric Class 8 trucks to move cargo from the Los Angeles ports throughout the Los Angeles basin, as well as to inland locations such as Riverside County, the Port of Hueneme in Oxnard, and eventually to Merced. The trucks will be operated by Toyota Logistics Services, UPS Inc., Total Transportation Services Inc., and Southern Counties Express.
In addition, Shell will develop two heavy-duty hydrogen fueling stations in Wilmington and Ontario, Calif. The stations will join three that are located at Toyota facilities around Los Angeles to form an integrated, five-station heavy-duty hydrogen fueling network. Shell and Toyota will provide multiple sources of hydrogen throughout the region, including over 1 ton of renewable hydrogen per day at one of the heavy-duty stations operated by Shell.
"Toyota believes that zero-emissions fuel-cell-electric technology, and the scalability, throughput speed, and driving range advantages of its hydrogen fuel, has the potential to become the powertrain of the future - and the capabilities of fuel-cell-electric heavy trucks are a big reason why," said Bob Carter, executive vice president of Toyota North America.
Mike Dozier, Kenworth general manager and a PACCAR vice president, said the project allows the port, Toyota and Kenworth to "explore and drive advanced zero-emission technologies that will play a critical role in the clean trucks of the future."
"This award is another recognition that hydrogen is a promising zero-emission solution for the heavy-duty transport sector," added Matthew Tipper, vice president, new fuels at Shell.