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Zero Carbon Charge says it will build 120 off-grid e-truck charging sites

9th April 2024

By: Irma Venter

Creamer Media Senior Deputy Editor

     

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Electric vehicle charging startup, Zero Carbon Charge, has launched a new subsidiary, Zero Carbon Logistics, which it says will roll out 120 off-grid solar photovoltaic (PV) electric truck charging sites on national highways across South Africa.

According to Zero Carbon Charge, the project will kick off with the construction of an initial six sites to be built on the N3 between Durban and Johannesburg.

“The first six sites on the N3 have started the permitting process, and we hope to be up and running by November, 2027,” says Zero Carbon Charge co-founder Andries Malherbe.

“The 120 truck charging network will be additional to the 120 electric passenger vehicle off-grid charging sites currently being built by Zero Carbon Charge,” notes the company.

Zero Carbon Charge adds that the new offering is in response to a growing shift by truck manufacturers to electric load carriers.

“Every day, 8 756 trucks travel on the N3 between Durban and Johannesburg, using over 658-million litres of fuel at an imported cost of R8-billion, emitting 1.8-billion kilogrammes of carbon dioxide (CO2) a year,” notes Zero Carbon Charge co-founder Joubert Roux.

“Replacing these fuel-powered trucks with electric models will save 670 kg of CO2 emissions per truck per day, significantly reducing our country’s reliance on expensive dirty fossil fuel imports.”

Zero Carbon Charge says any growth in domestic electric truck sales will create an increased energy demand, with the electricity required to charge the trucks using the N3 route daily totalling 2.3-billion kilowatt hours a year. 

“If one takes into account all 14 national roads, the country would need an additional 8 billion kilowatts a year of electricity to power the 30 000 electric trucks travelling on these routes daily, placing a major strain on the national grid.

“It is, therefore, critical that we start investing in off-grid infrastructure to power these trucks, particularly…on long-haul routes.”

Zero Carbon Charge says its proposed charging stations will all be offgrid, with each facility powered by 35 MWp of solar PV.

“Each station will deploy ultrafast charging technology, coupled with modular battery packs that are being developed in China, with the goal of being able to charge a truck within 20 minutes,” says the company.

“A big focus of the project is creating safe, clean facilities for truck drivers to rest, which, in turn, will increase road safety.

“Each station will offer restrooms and a shop, fast WiFi, as well as repair and wash facilities for trucks. There will be secured day and overnight truck parking bays available that will be monitored 24/7 by CCTV cameras linked to local security companies.”

 

 

 

 

Edited by Creamer Media Reporter

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