To do its part to save the environment, Toyota Motor North America pans on building a power plant that captures methane gas from dairy cattle waste, then turns it into water, electricity and hydrogen.
The news was announced at the Los Angeles Auto Show. Reportedly, the Tri-Gen Project, located at the Port of Long Beach, California, will be the world’s first commercial-scale 100 percent renewable power and hydrogen generation plant.
When it goes online in 2020, the Tri-Gen will be able to produce enough energy to meet the daily driving needs of close to 1,500 vehicles, about 2.35 megawatts of electricity, and 1.2 tons of hydrogen — each day, says Toyota. The hydrogen fueling station will also support the auto manufacturer’s operations at the port.
As the Tribune Content Agency reports, Toyota is betting heavily on fuel cell technology, particularly in Japan. Because of this, all of the Toyota fuel-cell vehicles that move through the port (including the Mirai Sedan and Toyota’s Heavy Duty hydrogen fuel cell Class 8 truck, Project Portal) will be powered by the alternative energy.
Said Matt McCory, senior engineer with Toyota research and development:
“In most states, you have a conventional natural gas pipeline network that provides heat for your stove or furnace. The majority of natural gas comes from drilling for well gases. We’re trying to green up this process. One way is to find renewable sources, like from gases emitted from landfills, wastewater treatment plants and farm animals.”
The majority of waste will be obtained from dairy farms in California. One must point out the hypocrisy of this partnership, as animal agriculture is responsible for the vast majority of greenhouse gas emissions on our planet. Nonetheless, at least some action is being taken to repurpose some of the emissions which are released into the atmosphere.
We look forward to learning more about the Tri-Gen power plant when it is switched on line, most likely in 2020. What are your thoughts? Please comment below and share this news!
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