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Monday, 05/27/2024 8:23:39 AM

Monday, May 27, 2024 8:23:39 AM

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$53M project brings hydrogen-powered Hyundai trucks to California
Brinley Hineman
Mon, May 6, 2024

The Center for Transportation and the Environment launched a project in California to deploy Hyundai Motor Co.’s hydrogen-powered trucks to boost zero-emission freight transportation in the state.

The $53 million project, NorCal Zero, will bring 30 of Hyundai’s Xcient Fuel Cell electric trucks to the San Francisco Bay and Central Valley areas, CTE said in a news release. The Xcient is touted as the world’s first mass-produced, heavy-duty truck powered by hydrogen.

Officials celebrated the project’s launch at a dedication of a hydrogen fueling station in West Oakland last week.

“Hyundai is incredibly proud and thankful to be a part of the largest ever single deployment of heavy-duty fuel cell electric trucks in North America. The community in Oakland leads the way in clean, sustainable freight transportation and serves as a blueprint for many more deployments in the U.S. to come,” Jim Park, a senior vice president at Hyundai Motor North America, said in the release.

CTE, a nonprofit headquartered in Atlanta that develops and implements zero-emission vehicles and supporting infrastructure, estimates that the project has the potential to avoid 24,000 metric tons of carbon dioxide emissions — equivalent to the emissions produced by consuming nearly 2.4 million gallons of diesel.

The trucks can travel more than 450 miles on a single fill of hydrogen, the release said. They are currently in use in Switzerland, according to Hyundai.

Hyundai has been working to build a comprehensive hydrogen mobility ecosystem across North America, the company said in a news release.

The hydrogen fueling station is in a historically Black and Latino community impacted by the freeways and diesel trucks traveling to and from the Port of Oakland. The nonprofit touted it as the largest in the world, designed to support up to 200 trucks and back-to-back refueling.

“Port-adjacent communities like West Oakland suffer disproportionately from the impacts of diesel freight, so we’re excited to explore how alternatives like hydrogen fuel cell electric trucks can move us toward our zero emissions goals,” West Oakland Environmental Indicators Project co-Director Brian Beveridge said in the release. “We look forward to a day when our community can breathe easy without the fear of toxic freight emissions.”

Papé Group maintains the trucks at its San Leandro facility. The company upgraded its facility with hydrogen detection and ventilation equipment to service the trucks. The University of California Berkeley and the West Oakland Environmental Indicators Project are collecting data on the project.
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