The Brussels-based company Taxi Verts has launched their first hydrogen car into service for the Belgian capital. The vehicle is being tested with the help of Eoly-Energy, a company in the renewable energy sector.
The pilot project for the hydrogen taxi will run for a year and it aims to gauge the efficiency and usability of the car on a mass urban scale. This is because, after 2025, the Brussels Capital Region mandates that all new taxis put into circulation should be CO2 neutral.
Taxis Verts is actively committed to mobility without CO2 emissions.Jean-Michel Courtoy, CEO of Taxis Verts
As European cities are moving quickly toward decarbonizing private vehicles, many companies and individuals are looking for the best options for CO2-neutral personal transport. Although electricity seems to be the default option, hydrogen is picking up speed and more and more cars, freight trucks and even trains are adopting the new tech.
“We are excited to participate in this innovative pilot project with local partners,” said Jean-Michel Courtoy, CEO of Taxis Verts. “Taxis Verts is actively committed to mobility without CO2 emissions, both with electric vehicles and now also with hydrogen from our partner Eoly.”
In the case of Brussels’ new taxis, Taxi Vets is launching their prototype with 100% green hydrogen, meaning that the fuel used for the vehicle will be produced using renewable energy exclusively. The only by-product of using hydrogen engines is water.
Belgian news outlet VRT reports that green hydrogen (the electricity used to make it comes from sustainable energy sources such as wind turbines or solar panels) is still rather scarce in Belgium. “That’s why we are testing 1 taxi and not 20 or 100”, said Stéphane Windels of Virya Energy. “But we are creating new production units for green hydrogen at present.”
The hydrogen taxi will be operated by two drivers, both trained by Eoly about the particularities of the hydrogen fuel cell. According to a press statement by the company, they will become ambassadors for the technology. Their experience with refueling time, range and flexibility of the car will be essential for evaluating the pilot project and the large-scale launch of hydrogen cars.