Myers Select Introduces Hydrogen Combustion Forklift Model

At The Future is Green conference this month in Long Beach, Calif., forklift service company Myers Select Material Handling will present the world's first hydrogen-combustion forklift to the North American market. The Linde-manufactured forklift made its world premiere in Germany last spring.

As the hydrogen-powered engine turns fuel into water vapor, the machine doesn't release any emissions. The engine holds 26 liters of hydrogen, equal to approximately 2.3 liters of useable diesel.

The hydrogen-powered forklift will not be available for purchase for at least another seven years, said Linde spokesperson Dale Verseput. He cited high production costs as the main reason for the machine's slow development.

“We are on the leading edge of forklift manufacturing,” Verseput said. “Our goal is to raise awareness in the production industry to allow these machines to be economically feasible. The greater number of companies that can make a commitment to hydrogen-powered technology, the cleaner our environment will be.”

When the hydrogen-powered model is made available, Myers Select will be the exclusive provider in the Southern California area. “It is our goal to be in the leading forefront of technology that helps reduce toxic emissions in our community,” Rich Allen, President of Myers Select, said.

The reduction in air emissions meets the Port of Long Beach's San Pedro Bay Clean Air Action Plan, which aims to significantly reduce air pollution over the next five years. The Port of Long Beach accounts for 10 percent of the total emissions of diesel particulate matter in the South Coast Air Basin. Forklifts currently account for 23 percent of all cargo-handling equipment at the Port of Long Beach.