Driving Electrification Forward While Meeting Upcoming Regs

November 21, 2022

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The move towards electrification for California fleets has been given a boost in the form of the Advanced Clean Fleets (ACF) Rule, which has many speculating how they will meet this regulation in time.

In the clean fuel sector, California has long been the beacon for pushing the needle closer and closer to zero-emissions transportation. With the introduction of the ACF Rule, this may become a reality much faster than many expected. The rule, if approved, aims to transition to 100% zero-emission vehicle fleets — where feasible — by 2045, with an accelerated transition schedule for drayage trucks and public fleets in line with Governor Newsom’s Executive Order.

To ensure this potential goal is met, fleets need to start planning now, and they need the right utility partner to develop an effective electrification plan. PG&E has been working diligently during the past few years to implement both its EV Fleet program and Business EV rate plan to help fleets easily and cost-effectively install charging infrastructure for their electric vehicles (EVs).

ACF Rule: Who, What, Where, When

Drafted by the California Air Resources Board (CARB), the ACF Rule would apply to drayage fleets and those operated by state, local, and federal agencies, as well as “high priority fleets.” CARB defines “high priority fleets” as companies with $50 million or more in gross annual revenue that either own, operate, or control at least one vehicle with a gross vehicle weight rating (GVWR) greater than 8,500 pounds, or entities that own, operate, or control a total of 50 or more vehicles with a GVWR greater than 8,500 pounds. The proposed regulation would affect medium- and heavy-duty vehicles, off-road yard trucks, and last-mile delivery vehicles. It is expected to go into effect beginning 2024.

According to CARB, the following benchmarks must be met:

  • 100% zero-emission drayage trucks, last mile delivery, and government fleets by 2035
  • 100% zero-emission refuse trucks and local buses by 2040
  • 100% zero-emission capable utility fleets by 2040

There are also regulatory components to the proposed rule that would affect manufacturers (OEMs can only sell zero-emission medium- and heavy-duty vehicles starting in 2040), state and local agencies (50% of vehicle purchases must be zero-emission beginning in 2024, 100% by 2027), drayage fleets (only zero-emission trucks may be added to drayage service by 2024), and high priority and federal fleets (must either comply with a model-year schedule or use the optional ZEVMilestone Schedule to phase-in ZEVs).

Getting Started Now

For affected fleets in California, the time is now to prepare for these proposed deadlines. When factoring in research time to decide on the necessary and applicable vehicles, lead time for planning and constructing the necessary charging infrastructure, and finding the dollars through grants or funding, fleets need to start the planning phase soon with an experienced partner like PG&E.

Businesses located in the PG&E service area have an array of options when exploring fleet electrification. Whether its tapping into the utility’s EV Fleet program, which offers incentives and rebates to help bring down the total cost of ownership and make electrification more affordable, or taking service on Business EV rates, which were designed to reduce charging costs by encouraging off-peak charging, businesses looking to electrify have an experienced partner ready to guide them through the process.

With a goal of assisting more than 700 companies deploy more than 6,500 EVs by 2024, PG&E’s programs offers substantial funding of approximately $236 million. This funding can be stacked with other grant funding opportunities, as well as with the Business EV rates. This gives fleets the ability to significantly reduce vehicle, infrastructure, and charging costs. Some fleets have seen savings of up to 53% on charging costs compared to other commercial rate plans, while also providing estimated savings up to 50% on fuel costs as compared to gas and diesel.

Learn more about PG&E’s EV Fleet Program and Business EV Rates to start on your electrification journey today.