CalZEV Coalition supports Innovative Clean Transit measure under consideration at California ARB; 100% zero-emission buses
Californians for Zero Emission Vehicles (CalZEV), a coalition of public health, environmental and electric vehicle industry organizations, announced its strong support for the Innovative Clean Transit (ICT) measure currently before the California Air Resources Board (CARB).
Under the proposal (earlier post), California transit agencies would be required to purchase 100% zero-emission buses by 2040 as they gradually phase out their dependence on buses that pollute the atmosphere.
CARB staff released the Innovative Clean Transit Discussion Document on 12 December 2017 for public comments and held a regulatory workshop on 15 December 2017. CARB staff is still collecting comments, and had originally planned an April 2018 workshop to discuss a revised proposal. CalZEV expects CARB to make a decision on the ICT in September 2018.
Full battery-electric buses running on today’s California electric grid emit 70% fewer greenhouse gas emissions than both natural gas and diesel-powered buses, according to the Union of Concerned Scientists. An MIT study estimated that air pollution is responsible for 200,000 premature deaths in the United States every year—higher than CDC estimates for annual deaths from accidents, strokes and lower chronic lower respiratory diseases.
Meanwhile, electric buses are already more cost effective over the lifetime of the vehicle, compared to fossil fuel powered buses. Replacing a single conventional bus with an electric bus can save a transit authority as much as $448,000 in operational savings over a 12-year period, CalZEV said.
The transition to an all-electric bus fleet is estimated to save California taxpayers more than half a billion dollars, while reducing air pollution, and boosting the state’s economy.
People of color in California bear the most burdens from air pollution in the state. Until California’s underserved communities become a high priority for the deployment of truly clean transportation, they will continue to feel the worst impacts of the transportation sector. California’s burgeoning heavy-duty electric vehicle sector presents a unique opportunity to combat pollution and climate change, while at the same time providing Californians an opportunity to grow clean energy jobs.—Adrian Martinez, staff attorney at Earthjustice
Californians for Zero Emissions Vehicles is a coalition of more than ten organizations and companies, including: AxleTech International, Inc., Brightline Defense, California Electric Transportation Coalition, Coltura, Green for All, Green Power Bus, EVgo, The Lion Electric Co., Motiv Power, Plug In America, Proterra and Zoox.