Energy Exchange

Inflation Reduction Act gives truck electrification a dose of adrenaline

President Biden will make an appearance at the iconic Detroit Auto Show this week, where he’s sure to tout the historic jolt the Inflation Reduction Act will provide the electric car market.

But the incentives of the IRA will reach beyond the Teslas, Mustang Mach-Es and Ford F-150 Lightnings that will get a significant boost through tax credits and charging infrastructure funds to expand the adoption of passenger EVs across America.

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EPA must protect California’s life-saving clean truck rules

By Larissa Koehler and Alice Henderson

This week, the Environmental Protection Agency is hearing from scientists, mothers, healthcare professionals, public health and environmental advocates – including EDF – and many others who submitted comments in support of California clean truck standards.

As EPA works toward finalizing federal heavy-duty emission standards proposed earlier this year, the agency has been accepting public comment on its notices considering Clean Air Act preemption waivers for California clean truck standards, including the Advanced Clean Trucks and Heavy-Duty Omnibus NOx (low-NOx) standards. Several other states have already adopted these standards in recent years to reduce health-harming pollution from new freight trucks and buses. The ACT requires an increasing percentage of new trucks and buses to be zero-emission through 2035, while the low-NOx standards aim to reduce nitrogen oxides from new diesel trucks.

Taken together, these protections will prevent almost 5,000 premature deaths, save California billions of dollars in health care costs and create thousands of new jobs by 2035. But the Truck & Engine Manufacturers Association — a trade group of the nation’s largest engine manufacturers, including Volvo and Daimler — has opposed these safeguards at the state and federal level, and is now challenging in court California’s ability to implement the low-NOx emission standards.

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Also posted in Air Quality, California / Language: / Comments are closed

4 main takeaways from America’s top transit agencies on electrifying buses

Many U.S. transit agencies, from New York to Los Angeles to Houston, are working to convert their bus fleets from diesel to electric. The number of electric transit buses currently on order or operating in the U.S. grew 112% from 2018 to 2021, according to CALSTART. Electric buses are cleaner, quieter and increasingly more cost-effective than traditional diesel-powered alternatives.

While many makes and models of electric buses are now available to address transit agencies’ needs, charging is still a significant hurdle. Transit agencies are faced with the complexity of determining charging infrastructure needs while maintaining operations and reducing costs, which can be a maze of decisions and obstacles to overcome.

To uncover the emerging trends, barriers and best practices these agencies are implementing to meet their own electrification goals, EDF worked with Atlas Public Policy to interview 28 transit agencies in the process of electrifying their fleets, as well as utilities, engineering firms, charging manufacturers and thought leaders in transit charging. The results are highlighted in a new report out today entitled, Deploying Charging Infrastructure for Electric Transit Buses: Best practices and lessons learned from deployments to date.

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Now is the time for California to go bold on electric trucks and buses

There is no single fix to the climate, air quality, political and economic challenges facing California, but the state’s early action to electrify its fleet of medium- and heavy-duty vehicles is one example of smart policy that can move us in a positive direction. As California’s legislative session concludes in August, lawmakers and the California Air Resources Board should take the next steps to implement the electric transportation transition with tools that are right at their fingertips.

Nationally, the transportation sector is the largest source of climate emissions and a primary contributor to local air pollution and the negative health and economic impacts that go along with it. Medium- and heavy- duty vehicles – the trucks and buses that move our goods and people – make up a small portion of total wheels on the road, but they produce an outsized portion of all emissions. In California, MHD vehicles make up just 6% of vehicles on the road, but produce 72% of the state’s health-harming nitrogen oxide emissions and 21% of all transportation climate emissions. Transitioning these vehicles to zero-emission models would make a big difference for air quality and the manufacturing economy, a sector where California is becoming a leader.

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Also posted in Air Quality, California / Language: / Comments are closed

TCEQ announces critical new funding commitment for zero-emission trucks

Critical funding for more zero-emission trucks in Texas is on the way. For the first time ever, a Texas Commission on Environmental Quality grant program that provides incentives to replace heavy-duty diesel vehicles will guarantee that at least half of the funding awarded will go to projects that include zero-emission medium- and heavy-duty trucks. The recently announced change will make this money available in the next round of grant funding for the Texas Clean Fleet Program, which will be open for applications soon.

Nitrogen oxide from diesel trucks contributes to climate change while increasing air pollution and harming the health of Texans. Our state is currently experiencing historic heat, which can be directly attributed to climate change. By replacing dirty diesel vehicles with clean alternatives, Texas is taking direct aim at climate and air pollution.

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The ZEV future is here: An 8,500% increase in truck deployments, commitments is proof.

Commercial U.S. fleets are going big on electric trucks, according to a new EDF analysis of class 2b-8 fleet announcements, which finds a nearly 8,500% increase in zero-emission fleet deployments and commitments since 2017.

To arrive at this eye-popping stat, EDF tracked public announcements of leading fleet commitments to deploy zero-emission trucks, as well as actual deployments (trucks on roads).

The recent influx of these vehicles — most of which are electric — is an important step toward reducing the health-harming, climate change pollution from diesel trucks and a key indicator of a flourishing market. But more ambition from policymakers is needed if we are going to achieve 100% zero-emission truck sales by 2035 — a critical date to ensure a near-zero-emission transportation sector by 2050.

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Also posted in Air Quality / Language: / Comments are closed