Hydrogen-powered garbage trucks debut in Europe

hydrogen-powered garbage trucks
© iStock/jeremyiswild

Refuse collection vehicles powered by hydrogen have begun a pilot implementation in the Eindhoven region of the Netherlands.

The pilot scheme is part of the Life ‘N Grab Hy! project, which aims to implement waste collection lorries which run on hydrogen across the EU; with the support of sustainable hydrogen project developer WaterstofNet and a funding grant provided by the EU’s Life Programme, a funding instrument for climate and environmental projects. The hydrogen-powered garbage trucks deployed by the project were built by E-Trucks Europe, a sustainable transport manufacturer, with the aid of hydrogen fuel cell developer Hydrogenics.

The vehicles, which debuted at Veldhoven City Hall on 11 April, are powered by electricity generated from hydrogen fuel and produce no emissions aside from water vapour. They can complete refuse collection duties for two full days before refuelling, which is projected to take around 10 minutes per vehicle and will take place at the WaterstofNet service station on the city of Helmond’s Automotive Campus. The hydrogen-powered garbage trucks are the first of their kind in Europe to actively participate in daily waste collection operations, with further trials planned for 10 other European cities.

Under EU regulations, zero-emission municipal waste and cleaning vehicles must be deployed throughout Member States by 2030. By reducing and eventually eliminating the emissions produced by refuse collection vehicles, not only can a Member State reduce its overall contributions to climate change, but suburban and residential areas can experience less air pollution, reducing the potential health risks for residents. A statement from Life ‘N Grab Hy! said: “This has an impact on the quality of the environment and we want to uphold this to the highest standard. This requires innovative solutions with which we can continue to guarantee the quality of the collection and at the same time continue to meet the set of environmental requirements… The investment in these trucks is a good example on the way towards [realisation] of clean transport and waste collection in 2030.”

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