Joint Agency Staff Report on Assembly Bill 8: 2022 Annual Assessment of Time and Cost Needed to Attain 100 Hydrogen Refueling Stations in California
December 22, 2022
Transportation Energy (600)
Clean Transportation Program
Jane Berner, California Energy Commission; Miki Crowell, California Energy Commission; Andrew Martinez, California Air Resources Board
The Joint Agency Staff Report on Assembly Bill 8: 2022 Annual Assessment of Time and Cost Needed to Attain 100 Hydrogen Refueling Stations in California is in accordance with Assembly Bill 8 (Perea, Chapter 401, Statutes of 2013), which requires the California Energy Commission (CEC) and California Air Resources Board (CARB) to “jointly review and report on progress toward establishing a hydrogen-fueling network that provides the coverage and capacity to fuel vehicles requiring hydrogen fuel that are being placed into operation in the state.”
The CEC’s Clean Transportation Program has invested nearly $166 million and plans to invest a total of $279 million in public hydrogen infrastructure primarily for light duty vehicles through fiscal year 2023-2024. These investments, combined with investment from the Volkswagen Mitigation Trust Fund and the private sector, are expected to support 200 hydrogen refueling stations. As of November 11, 2022, 62 stations have opened for retail sales, with the remaining stations scheduled to open by 2027.
There were 12,169 light duty fuel cell electric vehicles (FCEVs) on the road as of September 2022, and the 62 open retail stations can serve as many as 51,000 FCEVs when operating at capacity – about four times the fueling needs of the current on-road fleet. However, customer experience is undermined by a variety of factors, including station downtime, hydrogen supply disruptions, and other factors.
The CEC estimates the network of 200 stations will have the capacity to serve nearly 274,000 light-duty FCEVs. At least 13 of these stations will have the capability to serve medium- or heavy-duty vehicles. Planned station development should be sufficient to enable growing FCEV sales beyond auto manufacturers’ projections in the near term. CEC and CARB staffs intend to continue evaluating the FCEV market as it evolves.