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Fleets have much to gain from NACFE’s Run on Less – Electric program

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  • Jun 14, 2021 12:45 am GMT
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By Ellen Bell

From regional haulers to food and beverage delivery, operators of medium- and heavy-duty fleets understand that there is an urgent need to reduce the transportation sector’s contribution to climate change and poor air quality, and the impact their vehicles have. That’s why fleets in cities from New York to Los Angeles and Quebec to Vancouver have signed up for the North American Council for Freight Efficiency and Rocky Mountain Institute’s Run on Less-Electric program to help amplify understanding of electric trucks and collect data to scale their adoption.

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Run on Less – Electric is working with original equipment manufacturers to signal their readiness to pursue zero-emission vehicles, their desire to do their part to drive change and to make it work for their business model. The program will provide the opportunity for fleets to see zero-emission vehicles achieving product delivery along real-word routes, and the data collected will prove that ZEVs are a viable option for the future of logistics.

The proof will be in the data

Since it began in 2017, the Run on Less program has showcased the best efficiency technologies, operational practices and driver capabilities currently available to improve the bottom line for fleets through advancements in fuel economy and freight efficiency. NACFE and RMI understand the value of deployment in making the argument for accelerating the uptake of ZEVs and will highlight electric trucks in everyday operation, along with the actions needed to accelerate their adoption. Scheduled for September 2021, the program will showcase vehicles, drivers and charging infrastructure systems with a broad focus on different duty cycles and geographic areas.

In addition to real-world deployment, NACFE and RMI will be hosting the Electric Truck Bootcamp, a 10-part educational series on ZEVs appropriate for fleet managers, utility planners and policymakers. The boot camp will be a chance hear to from leaders in fleet electrification speak on topics including the fleet managers’ perspective, charging providers, engagement with utilities and finding an engineering firm.

Aspirational goals have been set

EDF is all in on a zero-emission future for trucks and buses. We are calling for all new heavy-duty vehicles to be zero-emission by 2040 – with many applications moving even more swiftly. We have set an ambitious interim target of transitioning at least 30% of the entire new medium- and heavy-duty market to zero-emission by 2030.

Through EDF’s history of working with companies operating large fleets, including FedEx and Walmart, we have learned that in addition to setting objectives we must work in parallel to pilot real world results. Fleet managers can then point to those results to accelerate the uptake of new opportunities in their organizations. The Run on Less program is ideally situated to provide the proof needed to advance adoption of zero-emission technologies.

Ambitious goals are incredibly important when you’re addressing a once-in-a-lifetime transformation of an established industry. Achieving these goals requires an understanding of where things currently stand, what barriers need to be addressed and how support can be targeted to advance realistic targets — this is where Run on Less – Electric comes in. Companies participating in this effort will demonstrate the capacity of current generation technology. The effort will help to draw attention to best practices for managing ZEVs and will identify the challenges that must be addressed to achieve widespread deployment.

The devil is in the details

EDF is eager to support Run on Less – Electric and we look forward to diving into even further detail on fleet electrification opportunities through two case studies NACFE will develop. The studies will provide a deeper level of understanding about the implementation of electric trucks and the steps that go into proper deployment, including a review of the needed infrastructure, total cost of ownership and training needs. This data will be essential to the task of making fleets more efficient while completely transforming the vehicle and fuel technology relied on by fleets to move goods, make deliveries and optimize business models.

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