-  Getty Image from EDF.org

Getty Image from EDF.org

Every day, medium and heavy-duty fleets carry goods, packages and people that keep the economy running. Important as these vehicles are, their exhaust causes serious harm to our world’s climate and to human health.

Fleets across the country are stepping up to change this by transitioning to electric vehicles. This is a vital move toward a zero-emission future that benefits people, planet and business.

Yet many fleets feel overwhelmed by the complexity of electrification – even as zero-emission models are increasingly available and lifecycle costs are coming down as technology improves.

A tool to simplify the journey

Environmental Defense Fund worked with leading experts, industry professionals and current fleet leaders to identify barriers to fleet electrification and create a tool to overcome these barriers.   

The Fleet Electrification Solutions Center (FESC) is a first-of-its-kind, free online resource that cuts through the complexity typical of truck electrification to connect fleet professionals with the solutions they need, all in one easy-to-navigate clearinghouse.

The  Fleet Electrification Solutions Center  is organized into five phases, with each phase capturing best practices from fleets on the forefront of truck electrification. Image Courtesy of EDF.org.  -

The Fleet Electrification Solutions Center is organized into five phases, with each phase capturing best practices from fleets on the forefront of truck electrification. Image Courtesy of EDF.org.

“Running electric trucks takes diligent planning and skilled problem-solving,” said Taki Darakos, Vice President, Vehicle Maintenance and Fleet Services at Pitt Ohio. “The Solutions Center can help fleets navigate the complexities of fleet electrification. There is no other resource that distills as much information in such an accessible and comprehensive format.”

The FESC is organized into five phases, with each phase capturing best practices from fleets on the forefront of truck electrification and distilling them into a straightforward, but thorough, online resource. Fleets can follow the step-by-step process to understand roles within their organization that need to be brought into the discussion, identifying the appropriate charging equipment and working with utilities on an installation timeframe, defining and launching new vehicle deployments, and much more.

Users can create an account to track their progress, or simply search the extensive resource library for reports or case studies aimed at accelerating the electrification journey.

Getting started

“There has never been a better time for fleets to take the next step on their electrification journey, and the Solutions Center is a great place to get started,” said Mike Roeth, Executive Director for the North American Council for Freight Efficiency.

Even fleets that have begun the electrification process can benefit from best practices, but if you’re at the starting line, Phase One on the Fleet Electrification Solutions Center is a good place to dive in. This involves learning from other companies’ case studies, your own company’s sustainability goals and your electric utility. This is also the time to tap an internal project management team that will help get processes rolling forward.

Electrifying your fleet is a long-term strategy that requires time, focus and resources – but the journey is worth it and the FESC allows you to take it one step at a time.

A zero-emission future

Fleets across the U.S. are excited about in zero-emission vehicles. In fact, over 200 fleets are already known to be running electric trucks in their fleet or have them on order. There are a range of factors driving this interest, including increased model availability, improved vehicle performance and the availability of financial incentives.

Projects such as Run On Less – Electric by NACFE have demonstrated that today’s electric vehicles are already capable of handling the demands for many medium- and heavy-duty applications, while also identifying opportunities for further improvements to expand the use cases of these vehicles. 

Several companies, including FedEx, have set ambitious goals to move fully to zero-emission vehicles for at least large segments of their fleet.  Major vehicle manufacturers are investing over $600 billion globally by 2030 to scale their production of electric vehicles.

We are in the early days of a major transformation. While each fleet will need to traverse its own electrification journey, there will be many common elements across these journeys. These include researching the current landscape, conducting a fleet analysis, identifying routes, and introducing electric models into the fleet. 

By getting started today, fleets can be at the forefront of the transformation and maximize the many benefits of electric trucks. The FESC can help guide the way.

One of the world’s leading international nonprofit organizations, Environmental Defense Fund creates pragmatic solutions to the most serious environmental problems. EDF has collaborated with FedEx to introduce their hybrid electric truck nearly 20 years ago, GM to eliminate emissions from its new passenger vehicles by 2035, and Iron Mountain to develop a fleet electrification plan – all with the goal of helping companies reduce their climate and air pollution footprints. Learn more at edf.org and connect with us on Twitter @EDFEnergyEX.