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Colorado business aims to tackle transportation emissions with hydrogen electric vehicles

Colorado business aims to tackle transportation emissions with hydrogen
Posted at 9:15 PM, Sep 07, 2023

DENVER — The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) in 2021 reported that transportation generated the largest share of greenhouse gas emissions by economic sector. The majority of fuel used for transportation is petroleum-based.

A Colorado business wants to curb those emissions through hydrogen electric vehicles.

New Day Hydrogen was created during the COVID-19 pandemic, and hopes to help neighborhoods that have been historically hurt by pollution. Specifically, New Day Hydrogen wants to help transform fleets of vehicles that traditionally rely on diesel fuel to hydrogen electric vehicles.

“These fleets tend to be centralized and focused in an area," said New Day Hydrogen CEO Seth Terry. "We can provide stations that can just meet the demand for a single user or a group of cluster users right around that infrastructure.”

Terry said a fleet would have to transition to hydrogen electric vehicles to utilize the new fuel, but that can happen incrementally.

"A key component of our model — which is to meet these fleet owners at that very early, incremental stage — is help them with, effectively, a pilot operation on converting their fleet to zero emissions, and do so with a small commitment of only a few vehicles," said Terry. "Then, over time, they can continue to take more of their vehicles and replace their legacy diesel vehicles with hydrogen electric vehicles.”

Terry said the fuel is a high pressure gas that uses hydrogen made from water and electricity. The water could be from a faucet or could have gone through a biological wastewater treatment process. He said the only emissions that would come from a vehicle are water vapor.

"The buses and trucks would go to a station and be filled up in a matter of minutes, very much like they are right now," said Terry. "The model that we're trying to do, as I say, is more of a demand-driven model that would rely less on trying to build the whole infrastructure up from zero, using lots of government money.”

Hydrogen electric vehicles are not as impacted by cold weather as battery electric vehicles, according to Terry. Fleets could have their own fueling stations on site, if desired.

“It is taking place relatively rapidly in other parts of the world right now," Terry said, adding that the hydrogen electric vehicles have been slow to catch on in the United States.

The company is focusing on fleets in and around the Globeville and Elyria-Swansea neighborhoods, which have historically been impacted by pollution.

“One of the most transportation impacted areas in the in the state right now," Terry said about the area. “These residents have also been impacted most by the emissions here, particularly from heavier duty diesel type vehicles... From a practical standpoint, a great centralized location for these diesel type of fleets.”

New Day Hydrogen secured their first letter of intent with Via Mobility Services. The company is searching for more vehicle fleets that would like to work toward zero emissions.

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