Zero Emission HGV Infrastructure Requirements

The Committee on Climate Change commissioned Ricardo Energy and Environment to carry out research to assess the infrastructure requirements and costs for the deployment of different zero emission heavy goods vehicle (HGV) technology options. The infrastructure considered includes hydrogen refuelling stations, ultra-rapid charge points at strategic locations, electric overhead recharging infrastructure on the roads and hybrid solutions combining these options.

The research concluded:

  • It is feasible to build refuelling infrastructure to support the deployment of zero emission HGVs so that they constitute the vast majority of vehicles on the roads by 2050.
  • Looking at infrastructure alone, deploying hydrogen refuelling stations is the cheapest of the options, costing a total of £3.4bn in capital expenditure in the time period from now until 2060. The strategic deployment of ultra-rapid charge points is the most expensive, at £21.3bn. In all scenarios, a significant number of smaller electric HGVs are deployed as these options are available and operating on the streets today. The cost of installing chargers at depots for these vehicles is included.
  • When the costs of the fuel as well as the infrastructure are included, the costs of deploying electricity or hydrogen HGVs are cheaper compared to the continued use of diesel.
  • Moving to zero-carbon infrastructure for HDVs is a significant challenge and requires planning, co-ordination, supply chains, resource and materials and a skilled workforce as well as strong government policy to enable the market to deliver.

This supported the Net-Zero Technical report.