California Energy Commission approves $95M plan for clean transportation investments; zero-emission infrastructure
The California Energy Commission (CEC) approved a $95-million plan for critical clean transportation investments to expedite the adoption of zero-emission vehicles (ZEVs) and help the state reach its climate, air quality and other goals.
The plan also focuses on closing an anticipated gap in charging infrastructure for electric vehicles, and increasing program benefits to disadvantaged communities.
The -2020 Investment Plan Update for the CEC’s Clean Transportation Program (formerly known as the Alternative and Renewable Fuel and Vehicle Technology Program) allocates $85.2 million for ZEVs, as well as zero-emission infrastructure and related workforce development.
The plan calls for:
$32.7 million for light-duty EV charging infrastructure
$30 million for medium- and heavy-duty ZEVs and infrastructure
$20 million for hydrogen refueling infrastructure
$2.5 million for workforce development
The investment plan also allocates $10 million for production of zero- and near-zero-carbon fuels.
Despite considerable ongoing investments in public charging by the CEC, the state’s lead agency for fueling infrastructure deployment, as well as the state’s electric utilities, Electrify America, and others, the agency estimates that California will fall approximately 81,600 charging ports short of the 250,000 needed to support the state’s goal of 1.5 million ZEVs on the road by 2025.
Among the solutions that the CEC is promoting to close the gap are:
Technologies that provide more effective charging.
Zero-emission car- and ride-sharing that make better use of charging infrastructure and provides disadvantaged and rural communities with access to clean transportation.
Streamlined incentives for charging infrastructure that leverage more private capital.
p>Increases to workforce development investments, particularly in disadvantaged communities, as well as increases to ZEV investment also reflect recommendations by the Disadvantaged Communities Advisory Group. The advisory group advises the CEC and the California Public Utilities Commission about programs that will help achieve clean energy and pollution reduction while being effective and useful in disadvantaged communities.
The Clean Transportation Program was created in 2007 by Assembly Bill 118 (Núñez) to support the state’s climate change policies by developing and deploying alternative and renewable fuels and advanced transportation technologies. The program has invested nearly $830 million to more than 600 projects covering a broad spectrum of alternative fuels and technologies.
AB 118 also created the Air Quality Improvement Program, which the California Air Resources Board administers. The program funds air quality improvement projects relating to fuel and vehicle technologies. The bill also established an enhanced fleet modernization program for the retirement of high polluting vehicles, run by the Bureau of Automotive Repair.