With the procurement of two waste collection vehicles incorporating fuel cell technology, the City of Mainz is sending a clear signal for a low carbon and sustainable future. According to Lord Mayor Ebling, traffic is responsible for a high proportion of climate-damaging greenhouse gas emissions, which have even increased over recent years and: “This must be vigorously fought against.”

In front of the backdrop of the Osteiner Hof, Lord Mayor Michael Ebling, Michael Potthast (Works Manager Waste Disposal) as well as Markus Dautermann (Management COO Zöller-Kipper GmbH), Thomas Lippardt (Zöller-Kipper GmbH/ Product Management Waste Collection Vehicles) as well as Manuel Schmitt (Branch Manager Zöller-Kipper GmbH), presented the new hydrogen vehicle of the waste disposal company of the City of Mainz on 11 August.

Fuel cell technology is an ideal solution for commercial vehicles such as these waste collection vehicles, which need to cover long distances, compress waste and be quickly refuelled during their daily service operations.

Along with Berlin, Freiburg, Reutlingen, Bielefeld and Bochum, Mainz is one of the first cities in Germany to deploy electrically powered waste collection vehicles with fuel cells. The use of further fuel cell vehicles for waste collection is already planned. Mainz will thus become an important pioneer in the state of Rhineland-Palatinate, which will hopefully be closely followed by many other municipalities.

A major advantage of this technology is that these vehicles travel with a smaller and thus lighter battery. This means that the payload is not affected. If the battery’s charging level drops, the fuel cell supplies the required electricity. After the end of the waste collection journey, the vehicle batteries are recharged on the company grounds using electricity from the company’s own solar power system.

The procurement of the hydrogen vehicles is being supported by the Federal Ministry of Transport and Digital Infrastructure within the framework of the Electric Mobility Funding Guideline with a total of 90 percent of the additional costs compared to a vehicle with a conventional drive system. The funding guideline is coordinated by NOW GmbH and implemented by Project Management Jülich (PtJ).

The Climate Protection Master Plan Manager, Dirk Lorig from the Parks and Environment Department was instrumental in implementing the funding projects.