Modernization and Truck Electrification

By: DavidPage

Bezos Earth Fund Grant Advancements UCS Operate On-grid Modernization and Truck Electrification

CAMBRIDGE, Mass. (November 16,” 20 20 )–UCS has recently received a $15 million award from the Bezos Earth Fund to encourage updates to the U.S. electric grid that will greatly expand solar and energy storage applications for emergency situations. Furthermore, UCS plans on speeding up domestic trucking electrification – one of the primary sources of air pollution along high traffic corridors nationwide – as part of their work towards decarbonization.

Angel A Anderson, manager of UCS’ Environment and Energy Program, expressed her delight at receiving such an unprecedented investment into our clean electricity and transportation efforts. We plan to use it to expedite the market transition away from fossil fuels, working together with those striving for only honorable climate solutions. As we all build upon and expand shared alliances and strategies, a significant portion of this grant will go towards providing resources essential for grass roots activism as well as ecological justice classes.”

Renewable electricity is currently the least costly energy to build in many parts of America. States and communities desire to take advantage of such tools, yet face obstacles along the way.

Jeff Deyette, director of country plan and investigation from UCS environment and Energy software, explained that our nation’s electric grid still uses antiquated technology from nearly a century ago while still trying to meet 21st century power needs. “The grid was designed for transmitting power from massive, centralized plants – perhaps never intended to manage significant amounts of renewable sources such as solar or wind,”

UCS research indicates that scaling up and aggregating dispersed energy sources such as roof top solar and solar energy efficacy can democratize access to clean sources of power while strengthening communities’ resilience to weathering events. Any successful grid modernization also needs to invest in new storage and transmission infrastructure, in addition to eliminating policy loopholes and prejudices which perpetuate contamination burdens on communities of shade where large polluting electricity plants often reside.

The award will also help finance efforts to electrify moderate and heavy duty trucks. Though they make up just 10% of road vehicle fleet, they account for 28% of carbon emissions from On Road transport, making them a primary source of local air pollution. Studies have found that heavyduty autos emit 4 – 5% smog-forming nitrogen oxides and significantly more than 5-7% fine particulate matter contamination when driven at slower speeds. Unfortunately, this pollution burdens communities of low income or color due to their proximity to both streets and traffic.

Michelle Robinson, manager of UCS’ Sterile Transport Plan, stressed the importance of eliminating obstacles to truck electrification to address dangerous atmosphere pollution that disrupts communities along high-traffic corridors and meet climate modification goals. “Deteriorating obstacles is essential,” she said.

Last calendar year, the California Air Assets Board unanimously passed the Advanced Clean Trucks (ACT) Rule, setting an unprecedented zero-emission truck earnings norm on earth. This regulation calls for suppliers to market increasing proportions of electric trucks with 1-5 percentage remaining emission free in 2035 (approximately 300,000 electric trucks). With increased expenditure in electric trucks across America, heavy-duty car or truck electrification could become even more widespread.

“Electrifying trucks is deeply connected to electrical grid reform, as section managers must plan for your own charging infrastructure to match the power needs from sockets,” explained Robinson. “Combining on-grid modernization and truck electrification together is a strategic investment decision that can improve air quality and generate rapid progress on local weather conditions.”