Toyota Motor North America Inc. announced Thursday that it will build its first large-scale natural gas-powered plant to help support its operations at the Port of Long Beach.

The Tri-Gen facility, announced today at the Los Angeles Auto Show at the Los Angeles Convention Center, will be at Toyota’s existing distribution center on port property and use natural gas to produce hydrogen, water and electricity to power its operations.

The fuel cell plant is projected to power the equivalent of about 2,350 average-sized homes and meet the daily driving needs of nearly 1,500 vehicles, and is part of the car maker’s efforts to achieve zero emissions from its logistics operations by 2050.

The company said the facility will be the first Toyota facility in North America to use 100 percent renewable power. It expects the plant to be online by 2020.

“The Port of Long Beach made sense for use because we’ve had a long-standing relationship with them,” said Russ Koble, spokesman for Toyota. “Lots of our cars and car parts come and go through that port.”

The plant will supply all Toyota fuel cell vehicles at the port in addition to refueling other operations.

Manufacturing and trade reporter Shwanika Narayan can be reached at snarayan@labusinessjournal.com or 323-556-8351. Follow her on Twitter @shwanika.