A regional train operator in Germany is becoming the first company to utilize 100% hydrogen fuel cell trains on their lines.
But if almost all train travel is electric now, and even those few diesel trains that still operate produce a mere third of the CO2 per passenger as a car, what’s the need for big investment into hydrogen in rail travel?
In Germany and the U.S., some regional lines still use diesel-powered locomotives, which expose passengers inside the cars and at the stations to more harmful air pollutants like nitrogen oxide, than standing near a busy intersection in a city.
Along with eliminating this health hazard, the higher emissions cost of a diesel locomotive moving at slower speeds on regional lines are averaged down in national emissions figures by electric powered ones, making the whole endeavor appear less than it actually is.
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