- Schneider National is testing a hydrogen-fueled truck, executives revealed during the Morgan Stanley Annual Laguna Conference on Sept. 12.
- EVP and CFO Stephen Bruffett said that the carrier is in the early stages of testing, but costs associated with the technology may create challenges.
- Despite that barrier, he noted how incentives could make the technology become more of a reality, similar to what is now widely available for electric truck adoption.
Companies with their own fleets as well as trucking firms have pursued various efforts to reduce carbon emissions.
Walmart — which operates a fleet of 10,000 tractors — debuted an initial lineup of compressed natural gas tractors in May, powered by engines developed by Cummins as part of the retailer’s goal to reach zero emissions by 2040. Performance Food Group in Texas, in partnership with Hyzon Motors, made its first deliveries to eight customers earlier this month using a liquid hydrogen electric truck.
Wisconsin-based Schneider revealed its plan for a more sustainable future in March 2021. The initiative to reduce its carbon emissions included doubling the size of its intermodal fleet by 2023 and a commitment to reduce carbon emissions by 7.5% per mile by 2025.
During the conference, EVP and Group President of Transportation and Logistics Jim Filter said availability of federal and state grants incentivized the company to focus its electrification investments in California, where in June it opened a charging depot at its South El Monte Intermodal Operations Center.
Adopting new technology is costly, Filter said.
“Now as it stands today, there’s absolutely no economic framework to support this as it exists today,” Filter told analysts. “It’s just not feasible without sizable grants.”