Hard-working semi trucks are a key component of any modern economy, but they’re also one of the world’s most polluting vehicles, often belching out harmful diesel and carbon emissions on the level of dozens of passenger cars. It doesn’t have to be that way, though. And to help prove it, the EPA and California‘s South Coast Air Quality Management District (AQMD) is spending $21.7 million to deploy 70 fully electric heavy duty Volvo trucks on California’s roads.
Volvo will leverage best practices learned from the Volvo LIGHTS (Low Impact Green Heavy Transport Solutions) project to develop an end-to-end blueprint to successfully introduce battery-electric trucks and equipment into the market at scale. “This grant provides Volvo Trucks with an excellent opportunity to further expedite the success of the ecosystem designed through the Volvo LIGHTS project,” said Peter Voorhoeve, president of Volvo Trucks North America. “We applaud the EPA and South Coast AQMD for addressing the key issues in advancing electromobility and incentivizing technology investments in the region, and are proud they continue to trust Volvo Trucks North America to lead the acceleration of Class 8 zero-emission vehicles.”
The 70 electric trucks will be replacing conventional diesel trucks, and are expected to provide a significant lifetime emission reduction. Like, “significant” significant, with more than of 150 tons of NOx, 1.3 tons of PM2.5, and 53,000 tons of CO2 emissions being … not emitted, I guess.
In addition to reducing emissions, the work being done by Volvo and the AQMD is becoming more important by the day as Nikola — the great white American hope of hydrogen trucking — implodes more hilariously day by day. As that debacle unfolds, “pure” battery electrics like those from Volvo and Tesla (companies that, you know, actually build stuff) seem more and more like the right way forward.
I mean, they do to me, at least. What about you guys? Do you think the hydrogen highway is ever going to be a thing, or are advancements in battery and charging technology coming fast enough these days to make the necessary investments in a hydrogen infrastructure just seem kind of … stupid? Scroll on down to the comments section at the bottom of the page and let us know!
Source | Images: Volvo Trucks.
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