As part of a year-long pilot project across Canada, 2 new hydrogen fuelled buses are to begin shuttling passengers around Charlottetown soon, as announced by representatives of the federal and provincial governments.

While details regarding just how often the buses will be running have not yet been worked out, it is known that the Ford vehicles will carry 12 passengers each and run on a hydrogen combustion engine with no harmful or wasteful emissions. It is also known that the intention is for the buses to be part of the city’s regular transit system, though the experimental vehicles can take several hours to be fuelled and hydrogen costs are approximately twice as expensive as traditional fuels at present.

Premier Robert Ghiz noted that Prince Edward Island hopes to eventually develop its own hydrogen sources, commenting, “We’re working on the hydrogen village in the West Prince area, to help complement our wind power.”

“The technology is fairly new. Right now across Canada there is probably only about 10 of these hydrogen buses, but you have to start somewhere.”

The federal government is investing $275,000 for the buses, with the province contributing $100,000. Air Liquide Canada is providing both the hydrogen for the vehicles and a contribution of $175,000 towards the year-long project, for which a temporary hydrogen fuelling station has been installed at the provincial government garage.