California set to require zero-emissions trucks but timeline lags science

by Hiroko Tabuchi, The New York Times


The California Air Resource Board unanimously voted in a new rule requiring more than half of all trucks sold in the state to be zero-emissions by 2035

  • This rule is expected to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, improve air quality, and establish California as an EV manufacturing hub
  • 100% of trucks on the road will be electric by 2045
  • The Inland Empire in Southern California has been exposed to high levels of pollution due to mass amounts of delivery trucks, reaching up to 1,200 per hour
  • Due to increases in online shopping, areas such as the Inland Empire, that have many warehouse facilities will continue to experience emissions from diesel trucks
  • Though diesel trucks only make up 7% of vehicles registered in California, they cause 70% of smog and 80% of particulate matter pollution in the state
  • The removal of diesel trucks will eliminate 60,000 tons of nitrogen oxides, preventing more than 900 premature deaths and delivering at least $9 billion in public health benefits

Science demands that we eliminate the use of fossil fuels by 2030 to avoid worst-case climate impacts. The Climate Center’s Climate-Safe California campaign calls for clean mobility solutions, including a phase-out of all gas-powered vehicles to reach net-negative emissions by 2030.

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Electric trucks are the ‘inevitable future,’ fleets say

By Jim Stinson, Utility Dive


  • Many EV truck manufacturers have preorders to help replace traditional fleets. Nikola has 14,000 trucks on preorder, with the first delivery of battery-electric trucks to European fleets expected in 2021 
  • Though the price of oil has dropped significantly over the past few months, fleets are still committed to transitioning to battery-powered trucks to keep on track with company environmental goals:

“Our target customers are typically very large and often global enterprises, and they need our battery-electric vehicles (BEVs) and our fuel-cell electric vehicles (FCEVs) … in order to meet their announced strategic environmental, social and governance commitments,” -Nikola Motor president Mark Russell 

  • One example is Toyota, which has a plan to reduce its vehicle emissions by 90% by 2050
  • Battery costs have declined as much as 80% over the last decade and are expected to decline by an additional 50% over the next decade, making EVs cheaper than gas vehicles by 2030
  • Fleet management company Samsara released survey results of 300 fleet managers, with 90% agreeing that EVs are the future of commercial fleets
  • The survey also found 85% of electric truck owners said traditional vehicles cost more than electric trucks to maintain and half of fleet managers surveyed would use the cost savings to increase pay for their drivers

The Climate Center’s Climate-Safe California campaign calls for investments and bold policies to support clean mobility, including a phase-out of all gas-powered vehicles.

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