Following last week’s story of  start up zero emission truck maker Nikola’s major announcements at its Nikola World event, legacy truck maker  Kenworth has shown the Paccar empire is open to embracing clean green trucks with the delivery of a new fleet of ten hydrogen fuel cell prime movers to a fleet operator for use in the Port of Long Beach in California.

Advance Clean Technology (ACT) Expo and also saw  Dutch fuel giant Shell announce that it intends to build two large-capacity heavy-duty hydrogen refueling stations for the project located at the Toyota Logistics Services R&D facilities at both Long Beach and in Gardena creating an integrated network of five station heavy-duty hydrogen refueling network in the Los Angeles basin.

The entire project known as the Zero-and-Near-Zero Emission Freight Facilities Project, or ZANZEFF for short will see Toyota Logistics Services (TLS) take four of the heavy-duty fuel cell electric trucks, moving cargo from the Ports of Los Angeles and Long Beach to locations  throughout the LA basin.

Parcel giant UPS will be taking three of the fuel cell Kenworths while  Total Transportation Services will have two while the final truck from the initial batch of ten will be used by Southern Counties Express.

“As a company always looking for the next innovative technology to better serve our customers, UPS was very pleased to be selected as a demonstrating partner for the hydrogen fuel cell electric semi project,”, UPS president of global fleet maintenance and engineering Carlton Rose says.

The ZANZEFF project combined the resources of Toyota, Kenworth and the Port of Los Angeles while the California Air Resources Board (CARB), provided a grant amounting to the equivalent of $AUD59 million (US$41 million).

“The collaboration between the Port of Los Angeles, Kenworth, Toyota and Shell is providing an excellent opportunity to demonstrate the viability of fuel cell electric technology in both drayage service and regional haul commercial vehicle applications operating in southern California,” Kenworth GM and Paccar vice president Mike Dozier said.

“The performance of the 10 Kenworth Class 8 trucks being developed under this program, the first of which debuted today, is targeted to meet or exceed that of a diesel-powered truck, while producing water as the only emissions by-product.”

ZANZEFF is one of many efforts over decades to reduce vehicle-sourced air pollution in LA, particularly around the ports, which host 16,000 conventional container-haulage trucks – a figure expected to double by 2030.

The ZANZEFF Kenworths use the T680 chassis expands on the capabilities of Toyota’s first two Project Portal concept trucks  offer an extended range of up to 450km on a single hydrogen fill  which Toyota says says is about twice the daily average distance covered by ‘drayage’ trucks and comes  “through enhanced capability, packaging, and performance”.

“Toyota is committed to fuel cell electric technology as a powertrain for the future because it’s a clean, scalable platform that can meet a broad range of mobility needs with zero emissions,” Toyota executive vice president for automotive operations Bob Carter says.

“The ZANZEFF collaboration and the innovative Shore-to-Store project allows us to move heavy-duty truck fuel cell electric technology towards commercialisation.”

The company reports the Project Portal Alpha and Beta heavy-duty trucks have logged more than 22,500km of testing and real-world operations in and around the ports.

The first Kenworth/Toyota fuel cell trucks for the ZANZEFF project will start operations in the northern autumn.