Businesses Applaud Largest Multi-State Effort to Expedite Decarbonization of Medium- and Heavy-Duty Vehicles
July 14, 2020 /3BL Media/ - Major businesses are welcoming a new agreement released today by the Governors of 15 U.S. states that pledges to work collectively to decarbonize commercial vehicles. This marks an important milestone as it is the largest multi-state collaboration on cleaning up transportation in U.S. history. It is incredibly timely as states look to rebuild a more resilient and sustainable economy in the wake of the pandemic and accelerate the transition to a clean transportation future.
California, Connecticut, Colorado, Hawaii, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, New Jersey, New York, North Carolina, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, Vermont, and Washington, as well as the District of Columbia issued a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) outlining a coordinated effort to expedite the deployment of zero emission medium- and heavy-duty vehicles.
The effort, dubbed the Multi-State Medium- and Heavy-Duty Zero Emission Vehicle MOU, will develop and implement a zero emission vehicle (ZEV) action plan for medium- and heavy-duty vehicles to support a market transition. This multi-state initiative is vital for enabling the policies and regulations, and cost-effective vehicle electrification needed to achieve state climate commitments and air quality improvement goals.
“Transportation impacts our business, our customers and our supply chain every day,” said Steven Moelk, fulfillment project implementation manager at IKEA Retail U.S. “We are committed to driving a clean transportation future with 100% of our home deliveries made in zero emission vehicles by 2025. This MOU will help increase the availability of and access to medium-and heavy -duty electric vehicles which are essential to helping us achieve our goals.”
“As one of the world's leading food and beverage companies, PepsiCo is working hard to mitigate our company’s climate impact by reducing our absolute GHG emissions across our value chain,” said Mike O’Connell, vice president of supply chain, PepsiCo. “PepsiCo has made significant investments in the implementation of zero-emission vehicles, with our electric vehicles in our businesses’ fleets already achieving 12 million, all-electric miles. Smart policies to increase the deployment of zero-emission medium- and heavy-duty vehicles is an important step to continue to reduce environmental impact in the transportation industry, and we support collaborative approaches to do so.”
“Like many companies, DHL understands the economic and health risks of climate change and transportation-related air pollution. That is why we’ve committed to operating 70% of our first and last mile services with zero-emission solutions globally by 2025,” said Greg Hewitt, CEO, DHL Express U.S. “Transportation and logistics companies are an important part of the solution, and policies that support the uptake of electric and zero emission vehicles present a significant opportunity for companies and participating states. We are proud to support these Governors on this important decision.”
“Major businesses and institutions support state efforts to transition to zero emission vehicles because it will generate significant economic, social and environmental benefits,” said Alli Gold Roberts, director of state policy, Ceres. “Transportation is the greatest source of greenhouse gas emissions in the U.S., and trucks and other heavy-duty vehicles are responsible for an increasingly larger share of emissions. Forward-looking leadership and coordinated action between states is essential for developing the market-enabling levers that will drive electric truck deployment at the pace and scale needed to tackle the climate crisis.”
Earlier this month, 37 businesses and investors – including major fleet operators such as DHL, IKEA North American Services, PepsiCo, and Unilever – sent a statement of support to the 13 state Governors and the Mayor of D.C.. They highlighted the long-term cost savings and benefits that can be captured by decarbonizing commercial vehicles. They also underscored policy innovation as a necessary element to expedite the market transition. DHL and IKEA are also members of the Corporate Electric Vehicle Alliance, a platform of major companies and fleet operators working to accelerate corporate uptake of electric vehicles.
“With ever more urgency as businesses navigate a shifting economy and business model in the wake of COVID-19, we support the MOU and forthcoming [action plan] as a means to strengthen the clean transportation market, boost economic development, and improve public health,” the businesses wrote. “A coordinated multi-state approach to implementation of market-enabling initiatives is required to rapidly unlock the long-term savings, climate and clean air benefits of [medium- and heavy-duty vehicle] electrification.”
Ceres is a sustainability nonprofit organization working with the most influential investors and companies to build leadership and drive solutions throughout the economy. For more information, visit www.ceres.org and follow @CeresNews.