Fonterra puts electric tanker on the road while Hyundai and NZ Post turn to hydrogen (thanks to govt co-funding)

Buzz from the Beehive

It’s great to have Energy and Resources Minister Megan Woods – while “celebrating” the launch of two initiatives for energy decarbonisation in the transport sector in New Zealand – give as an idea of what happens to handouts of government money.

Too often, the handouts are announced – and that’s the last we hear of it.

In this case Woods has drawn the public’s attention to two projects  which (she contends) were

“… made possible with the help of Government funding”.

This implies they would have been impossible if Government funding had been denied.


Whatever might have happened without the state’s investments,Woods could boast that the money has resulted in –

  • New Zealand’s (and possibly the world’s) first electric milk tanker entering Fonterra’s fleet; and
  • Hyundai and NZ Post getting the country’s first hydrogen truck on the road.

The dosh was dished out from the government’s Low Emissions Transport Fund, administered by the Energy Efficiency and Conservation Authority (EECA).

Fonterra received $427,000 in co-funding, of an estimated total cost of $850,000 to buy the electric truck cab/chassis and convert it into a tanker. The work was completed by a local engineer who specialises in mounting Fonterra’s tanker barrels and Fonterra’s in-house service technicians who specialise in building their tankers.

The E-tanker will operate on battery-swap technology, meaning just a few minutes’ downtime to swap batteries, which can be charged at off-peak times.

Hyundai NZ received $500,000 in co-funding to buy and deploy an initial fleet of five zero-emission Hydrogen Fuel Cell Electric trucks into New Zealand

“… and enter real-world daily logistics operation trials”.

We must assume this is in contrast to unreal-world daily logistics operation  trials.

NZ Post will operate the first of these, with plans to eventually deploy it on the Whangarei-Auckland-Hamilton route.

Megan Woods highlighted the importance of large-fleet operators leveraging new technology to reduce their emissions.

“These Government partnerships with industry are vital to achieving our climate goals, Megan Woods said.

“It’s my hope these projects will deliver valuable lessons and financial insights that will be shared with others, and can be replicated across the national heavy fleet.”

Transport accounts for more than 20% of the country’s emissions, and heavy vehicles, most of which are for freight, emit almost a quarter of our total transport emissions.

Woods said heavy transport is harder to decarbonise than light transport, and a mix of hydrogen, electricity and other low-emission fuels is likely to be needed to help meet the Emissions Reduction Plan’s target to cut emissions from freight transport by 35 percent by 2035.

The truck projects had the potential to be transformational for heavy transport, she said.

According to Hyundai, the truck will save emissions equivalent to taking 100 cars off the road.

In the dairy sector, nationwide annual emissions from Fonterra’s milk collection are estimated to be around 126,000 tonnes of CO2e.

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The Energy and Resources Minister Dr Megan Woods is celebrating today’s launch of two firsts for energy decarbonisation in the transport sector in New Zealand; an electric milk tanker and a hydrogen truck, made possible with the help of Government funding.

2 thoughts on “Fonterra puts electric tanker on the road while Hyundai and NZ Post turn to hydrogen (thanks to govt co-funding)

  1. Surely the article should be referring to a coal-fired milk tanker because the source of the energy which powers the vehicle, (after that energy is stored in the vehicle battery,) is coal. (Any new demand on the grid will have to be met by coal as the renewables are working at peak already.)

    Liked by 1 person

  2. It would be more truthful to state that thanks is due to the net-productive taxpayers who pay more into the fisc, than we ever take out.


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