Southern California Gas Co. (SoCalGas) is working with Ford Motor Company on a demonstration project to reduce commercial fleet emissions by developing an F-550 Super Duty Hydrogen Fuel Cell Electric Truck.
This collaboration is part of the US Department of Energy’s (DOE) SuperTruck 3 program, which significantly reduces emissions in medium and heavy-duty trucks. The utility’s participation is another step toward its ASPIRE 2045 sustainability goals by working to replace 50% of its over-the-road fleet with clean fuel vehicles by 2025 and operate a 100% zero-emission fleet by 2035.
Ford will provide SoCalGas with an F-550 Super Duty Truck to evaluate the prototype truck’s performance under real-world conditions. SoCalGas was chosen to determine how the truck can meet the rigorous demands of utility work because of its climate and location. The demonstration project will also include a temporary hydrogen refuelling station at SoCalGas’ Bakersfield facility. The truck is expected to deploy in 2025.
This project represents a unique opportunity to decarbonize large fleets like utilities that require long ranges, fast refuelling, onboard power needs, and 24/7 emergency response.
Already, SoCalGas’ fleet includes 50 hydrogen fuel cell electric vehicles (HFCEVs), making the company among the first utilities in the nation to start transitioning to hydrogen-powered vehicles. More recently, SoCalGas announced plans to install 1,500 electric vehicle chargers at 67 company facilities by the end of 2024. Currently, a third of SoCalGas’ over-the-road fleet operates on clean fuels.
In May the company won the “Leading Private Fleet” Award at the 2022 ACT Expo, North America’s largest advanced transportation and clean fleet event. The award recognizes leadership that goes above and beyond what is required to achieve sustainability in a company’s fleet operations.
SoCalGas announced a proposal to develop Angeles Link, a green hydrogen energy infrastructure system that could deliver clean, reliable energy to the Los Angeles basin to provide a path to decarbonize sectors that require clean fuels and cannot currently be electrified, including heavy-duty transportation.
SoCalGas has more than 10 active hydrogen pilot projects as part of its commitment to being the country’s cleanest, safest, and most innovative energy company.
State Senator Josh Newman said, “This groundbreaking project will not only reduce greenhouse gas emissions from the transportation sector, but it also offers promise toward tackling America’s current energy challenges.”
Jim Buczkowski, Director at Ford, said, “For our wide spectrum of Ford Pro customers, there are application gaps that battery electric vehicles just can’t fulfill yet, so we’re looking at hydrogen fuel cells to power larger, heavier commercial vehicles while still delivering zero tailpipe emissions.”
Neil Navin, VP at SoCalGas, said, “This project is a critical step toward finding real-world solutions to decarbonize heavy duty transportation such as our utility fleet with Ford’s H2 Fuel Cell Electric F-550.”