December 12, 2007

British Columbia finalizes hydrogen contract for 20 new fuel-cell buses

Victoria, British Columbia – BC Transit has finalized a six-year, $20-million contract with Air Liquide Canada Inc. of Montreal to supply hydrogen for the province’s 20 new fuel-cell buses, which will arrive beginning next summer. The announcement was made by Transportation Minister Kevin Falcon and BC Transit chair Kevin Mahoney.

“When these buses are up and running, BC Transit will have the largest hydrogen fuel cell bus fleet worldwide,” Falcon said. “The development of this fleet is a major step in our commitment to hydrogen and fuel cells as a zero-emission transportation solution.”

Air Liquide, together with Canadian companies Sacre-Davey Group, Hydrogen Technology and Energy Corporation, and Hydrogenics Corporation, will design, supply, operate and maintain two hydrogen fuelling stations. The first, in Victoria at BC Transit’s Langford Transit Centre, will be completed by mid-2008. The other, scheduled for mid-2009 completion, will be located in Whistler at a new BC Transit facility currently being planned.

The first of BC Transit’s fleet of fuel-cell buses will undergo testing and evaluation in Victoria in the summer of 2008. When fully operational in late 2009, the new fleet will be based in Whistler as part of public transportation for the 2010 Olympic and Paralympic Winter Games. The low-floor buses will have a range of 500 km, a top speed of 90 km/h and a life expectancy of 20 years.

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