Toyota trialling hydrogen-fuelled vehicles in Australia
Toyota believes hydrogen-fuelled vehicles are more viable than electric ones — and it has brought three of its Mirai models to Australia to prove it.
The Mirai is already on sale in Europe, Japan and California and uses an on-board fuel cell to convert hydrogen into electricity. The small demonstration fleet will be accompanied by a portable refuelling station, which will allow the company to tour the vehicle around the country for maximum exposure.
When the Mirai’s hydrogen supply is running low, it can be fully refuelled in a matter of minutes — a stark contrast to the longer charging times of most electric vehicles. The Mirai can also travel roughly 500km before needing a refill.
Appealing as the vehicles will be to customers, it will likely be a number of years before they’re commercially available. Dave Buttner, the President of Toyota Australia, explains that the country doesn’t yet have the infrastructure to support a large-scale rollout of hydrogen fuelled cars.
"This will take time to develop so it is imperative that we take a whole of industry approach so that we can move these plans along as quickly as possible,” he said.
"Fuel cell technology is expected to play a key role in the future and we do not want Australians to miss out on this.”
Other manufacturers currently trialling commercial hydrogen fuelled vehicles include Hyundai, Audi and Honda. The Toyota Mirai test fleet will be in Australia for the next three years.
Drax advances biomass strategy with Pinnacle acquisition
The Group’s enlarged supply chain will have access to 4.9 million tonnes of operational capacity from 2022. Of this total, 2.9 million tonnes are available for Drax’s self-supply requirements in 2022, which will rise to 3.4 million tonnes in 2027.
The £424 million acquisition of the Canadian biomass pellet producer supports Drax' ambition to be carbon negative by 2030, using bioenergy with carbon capture and storage (BECCS) and will make a "significant contribution" in the UK cutting emissions by 78% by 2035 (click here).
This summer Drax will undertake maintenance on its CfD(2) biomass unit, including a high-pressure turbine upgrade to reduce maintenance costs and improve thermal efficiency, contributing to lower generation costs for Drax Power Station.
In March, Drax secured Capacity Market agreements for its hydro and pumped storage assets worth around £10 million for delivery October 2024-September 2025.
The limitations on BECCS are not technology but supply, with every gigatonne of CO2 stored per year requiring approximately 30-40 million hectares of BECCS feedstock, according to the Global CCS Institute. Nonetheless, BECCS should be seen as an essential complement to the required, wide-scale deployment of CCS to meet climate change targets, it concludes.