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California Awards $23.6 Million for Electric Drayage Trucks

May 4, 2016

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The check for 23.6 million is the largest grant ever made to advance zero emission trucks serving ports in the U.S. Photo: Gladstein, Neadross & Associates
The check for 23.6 million is the largest grant ever made to advance zero emission trucks serving ports in the U.S. Photo: Gladstein, Neadross & Associates

California is awarding $23.6 million to the South Coast Air Quality Management District for a statewide zero-emission, Class 8 drayage truck development and demonstration project.

The South Coast air district is partnering with air districts in the Bay Area, Sacramento, San Diego and San Joaquin Valley for a statewide demonstration of 43 battery electric and plug-in hybrid drayage trucks serving major California ports. The trucks will be used in all five air districts to target key areas of the state with drayage truck activity.

Manufacturers including Kenworth, Peterbilt, Volvo and BYD are involved in the project and will use their engineering resources, manufacturing capabilities and distribution networks to support drayage truck development.

The funding comes from the California Climate Investments project and will be aimed at reducing greenhouse gases, petroleum usage and pollution in areas where reduction is needed most. The project is also designed to accelerate the commercialization of heavy-duty advanced, zero-emission technologies, establishing a path for implementing SCAQMD’s clean air plan that is currently under development. The SCAQMD is the air pollution control agency for Orange County and major portions of Los Angeles, San Bernardino and Riverside counties.

"This project will help put the very cleanest short-haul trucks to work where they are needed most, moving cargo from the state’s biggest ports to distribution centers and rail yards,” said Mary D. Nichols, Air Resources Board chair. “This is good news – and cleaner air – for all Californians, but especially those who live in neighborhoods next to these industrial facilities or along some of our state’s busiest trade corridors.”

The effort is part of a larger statewide investment in low-carbon transportation projects aimed at helping the state reach emissions reduction goals and improve air quality. Freight transport in California accounts for about half of diesel particulate matter, 45% of NOx emissions and 6% of all GHG emissions in California, according to ARB.

“This unique collaborative effort will accelerate the commercialization of advanced zero-emission truck technologies that are vital to improving air quality in communities near our busy freight corridors,” said Joe Buscaino, Los Angeles city councilman and SCAQMD board member. “Cleaner truck fleets on our roadways are important for air quality and climate goals, and essential to protecting public health.”

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