Pledges up to $2 million to build charging stations
More battery-powered trucks should enter the Port of Oakland fleet by 2020 thanks to a new state grant.
The California Air Resources Board has preliminarily awarded a $50 million grant to the Port of Long Beach for the Sustainable Terminals Accelerating Regional Transformation (START) Project. The START Project will demonstrate nearly 100 pieces of zero-emissions terminal equipment and trucks at three California seaports, including Oakland, develop a near-zero emissions tugboat, deploy two of the cleanest ships ever to call the West Coast, and advance workforce development programs to support sustainable goods movement.
The START Project is part of California Climate Investments, a statewide initiative that puts billions of cap-and-trade dollars to work reducing greenhouse gas emissions, strengthening the economy and improving public health and the environment — particularly in disadvantaged communities.
Oakland is expected to receive about $9 million in grant funds. Here’s how the money would be used:
- Shippers Transport Express, a Port tenant, would get 10 zero-emission, battery-powered trucks to haul containers.
- Another tenant, SSA, would acquire five zero-emission yard trucks to shuttle containers within Matson marine terminal, which SSA operates.
As part of the agreement, the Port of Oakland expects to spend up to $2 million to construct battery-charging stations. Long Beach and Stockton are other California ports participating in the grant program.
“Our goal is to minimize the impact of containerized freight transportation on air quality,” said Richard Sinkoff, Director of Environmental Programs and Planning at the Port. “Zero-emission vehicles play a big role in that effort.”
Oakland drafted a clean air plan this summer calling for further reduction in diesel emissions from cargo operations. The plan is out for public review. Among other things, it recommends a conversion to zero-emission vehicles when technology is readily available and financially practical. Electric vehicles don’t emit diesel exhaust contributing to air pollution.
A handful of electric trucks currently operate in Oakland hauling containerized cargo. The state grant will increase the number. The Port projected that new battery powered trucks could be in service by mid-2020.