Germany launches the world's first hydrogen-powered trains

A hydrogen-powered train
(Image credit: PETER ENDIG/DPA/AFP via Getty Images)

Germany launched the world's first eco-friendly rail line consisting of 14 hydrogen-powered passenger trains Wednesday. These will replace 15 diesel trains in the state of Lower Saxony, reports The Associated Press.

According to a press release, the state subsidiary LVNG had been looking for an alternative plan to replace diesel fuel since 2012. "The German government has backed expanding the use of hydrogen as a clean alternative to fossil fuels," writes AP.

Germany invested about 93 million euros ($92 million) into the project to "make its economy greener."

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The 14 trains, manufactured by the French company Alstom, are emissions-free and low-noise. Only operating on hydrogen fuel cells to generate electricity, the trains will have a range of 1,000 kilometers (621 miles), which means that a train can run for an entire day with a single tank of hydrogen.

CNN writes that the President of Lower Saxony, Stephan Weil, called the news a "model for the rest of the world" and "a milestone on the road to climate neutrality in the transport sector."

The trains' next stop will be in Frankfurt, eventually making their way to Italy and France.

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