Heavy-duty electric trucks are a recognized technology, capable of reducing the transportation sector’s greenhouse gas emissions. Given the barriers that must be surmounted to increase electric truck deployments — including lack of charging facilities, limited (but increasing) model availability and a lack of widespread government support to address higher upfront purchase prices — finding regions well-suited for regional haul electric truck deployments is key to ensuring their initial success and thereby advancing the overall market, NACFE says.
NACFE’s recently released report proposes a framework for prioritizing regions for electric truck deployments based on differences in key enabling traits. The highest priority regions share traits such as relatively mild weather, cheap electricity prices, high levels of freight movement, a pressing need to improve air quality and supportive policies and incentives.
“If deployments are done strategically, they are more likely to be successful, which not only benefits first-movers, but also catalyzes further deployments, thereby benefitting the industry as a whole and speeding adoption of this technology,” the report states.
The report proposes a three-part framework to prioritize regions for electric truck deployments:
- Technology: Identify the regions that are most favorable to the unique attributes of the technology itself.
- Need: Identify the regions that exhibit the greatest need for the technology.
- Support: Identify the regions that provide the most support for the technology.
The report identifies five high-priority regions for regional haul electric truck deployments: Northern and Southern California, the Texas Triangle, Cascadia, the Rocky Mountain Front Range and the Northeast.
NACFE and report co-author Rocky Mountain Institute (RMI) have long championed regional haul trucking operations as the segment best suited to be early adopters of battery electric trucks. This is due to its relatively short-haul nature — typically less than 300 miles per day — and return-to-base operations, which make charging infrastructure buildout relatively straightforward. Regional haul is also well-suited to the range of electric trucks currently on the market, NACFE says.
The report also examines how cooperation between trucking fleets and multiple stakeholders is critical to success, such as state, city and utility incentives that are crucial for encouraging trucking fleets to switch from diesel-fueled to electric trucks; trucking fleets partnering with local technical schools and colleges to find and train staff to drive, manage and service electric trucks, creating local economic opportunity and job creation in a green economy; and how early planning between stakeholders is needed to building infrastructure and acquiring vehicles on an appropriate timeline.
To download the report, CLICK HERE.