US fleet operators call on states to adopt ACT and ACC rules to accelerate the shift to EVs

Will the US commercial fleet industry embrace the benefits of electrification, or will it be dragged kicking and screaming into the EV era? Recently we’ve seen some encouraging signs that the staunch opposition that some EV advocates fear is not materializing.

A coalition of commercial fleet operators has sent an open letter to the governors of nine states, urging them to adopt California’s Advanced Clean Trucks (ACT) and Advanced Clean Cars II (ACC II) regulations.

Back in May, the California Air Resources Board (CARB) voted to finalize its Advanced Clean Fleets (ACF) regulations, which requires all trucks to be zero-emission by 2042. The ACF rules complement CARB’s Advanced Clean Trucks and Advanced Clean Cars rules, and together they set a timetable for phasing out ICE vehicles.

Several industry trade associations expressed strong opposition to the ACF rules. One exec predicted that ACF would “guarantee a complete dismantling of our state’s trucking industry.” Another made a number of incorrect statements about EVs in a speech to the US Congress. EV opponents formed the Clean Freight Coalition to lobby against clean freight regulation.

This was, and is, a worrying development for EV advocates—it’s hard to imagine an effective transition to EVs if trucking firms are going to piss on the whole idea. When Charged asked former Daimler exec and electric truck advocate Rustam Kocher about the issue, he wasn’t surprised at the opposition. “This industry is very, very old-school, very, very conservative. You’ll see pushback from them until TCO becomes positive operating the vehicles,” he told us.

Things started to look a little brighter in July, when some of the nation’s largest truck-makers, including Cummins, Daimler, Ford, GM, Hino, Isuzu, Navistar, Paccar, Stellantis and Volvo, along with the Truck and Engine Manufacturing Association, pledged to comply with the ACF regulations.

The latest news comes from the Ceres Corporate Electric Vehicle Alliance, a coalition of 31 companies that collectively own, lease or operate over 2.7 million fleet vehicles (both passenger cars and heavy-duty vehicles) in the US. In a letter to the governors of nine states, the group wrote that more widespread adoption of both ACT and ACC II would enable companies to plan more effectively for rollouts of clean vehicles.

“By adopting policies like ACT and ACC II, state policymakers can help fleets access the volume and variety of zero-emission vehicle models they need to unlock significant economic, health, and climate benefits,” the alliance members wrote.

Eight states have already adopted the ACT rule, and six more are in the process of adopting it. At least six states have adopted the ACC II rule, and seven more are working to complete the process before the end of 2023.

“The ACT and ACC II rules will accelerate and guide the clean vehicle transition, helping to satisfy the demand for zero-emission trucks and vans while sending a clear market signal to companies and utilities to invest in building the charging infrastructure necessary to support them,” said Abby Campbell Singer, Head of Climate and Infrastructure Policy at Siemens, a member of the Ceres alliance. “We encourage governors across the country to adopt these key policies and capitalize on the surge in private and public investment available for the clean vehicle transition.”

Source: Ceres Corporate Electric Vehicle Alliance


Webinars & Whitepapers

EV Tech Explained