Canada, China, Chile, Finland, Germany, Japan, Netherlands, Norway, Sweden to collaboratively grow zero-emission commercial vehicle manufacturing, infrastructure and deployment

CALSTART’s Global Commercial Vehicle Drive to Zero program and campaign organizes expanded multinational push for zero-emission trucks and buses

September 16, 2020

RIYADH – Noting the climate, economic, jobs and health benefits it would bring, today nine nations on four continents agreed to work collaboratively to grow zero-emission commercial vehicle manufacturing, infrastructure and deployment at home and globally.

The Global Commercial Vehicle Drive to Zero (Drive to Zero) – a program of CALSTART and a new campaign of the Clean Energy Ministerial under the Electric Drive Initiative – is expanding this international push.

Canada, China, Chile, Finland, Germany, Japan, Netherlands, Norway and Sweden made the announcement at a pre-event ahead of the Eleventh Clean Energy Ministerial (CEM11) next week. CEM is a global forum for top energy ministers designed to drive forward policies and programs that advance clean energy technology.

These nations and over 80 government, city, industry, fleet and utility partners have agreed to work collaboratively to identify best practices to support and accelerate the growing zero-emission commercial vehicle market, eliminate barriers to development and adoption, and coordinate among stakeholders to grow the zero-emission commercial vehicle segment. The goals of Drive to Zero are outlined in the Drive to Zero pledge.

“Our economy depends on the efficient movement of goods. Greener commercial vehicles will lower global emissions,” said the Honourable Seamus O’Regan, Canada’s Minister of Natural Resources. “Today, I call upon other governments and the private sector to join us in the campaign.”

Canada was the first national government to become a Drive to Zero pledge partner for zero-emission commercial vehicles at CEM10 last year in Vancouver. Representatives from Canada and China, co-leads of CEM’s Electric Vehicles Initiative, welcomed the new nations to the Drive to Zero program and campaign today.

“Freight is often overlooked in the discussion, but is crucial for us to meet our climate goals and improve the liveability in cities. In the Netherlands we have high ambitions with zero-emission zones in cities for freight to be implemented by 2025 and all buses to be zero-emission also,” said Stientje van Veldhoven, Minister for the Environment of the Netherlands and Chair of the Transport Decarbonisation Alliance. “To keep goods flowing through our cities efficiently and clean, we need zero-emission vehicles. We need to move this market forward fast and we need to do this together, globally. Therefore, the Netherlands is proud to support the CEM Global Campaign ‘Drive to Zero’ helping speed up zero-emission commercial vehicles worldwide.”

“In Chile we are reducing the emissions associated with our energy sector as part of our Decarbonization Strategy. In this sense, we have implemented public policies that point in the direction of the proposed goals,” said Francisco López, Chile’s Undersecretary of Energy. “Our commitment to electromobility is reflected in several programs that we develop with our Sustainable Energy Agency as the ‘Accelerator,’ an e-mobility incubator that supports companies to strategically integrate electromobility into their business models, and the program ‘Giro Limpio,’ which certifies and recognizes the efforts made by freight transport companies in the field of sustainability and energy efficiency. In this way, the Ministry of Energy of Chile will support and sign the pledge of the Drive to Zero program to strengthen the development of electromobility and energy efficiency in the crucial transport sector.”

“Sweden has high ambitions. We are focusing our efforts on electrifying the transport sector, it is necessary in order to reach our national target of 70 percent less greenhouse gas emissions in the transport sector by 2030,” said Swedish Minister for Energy and Digital Development Anders Ygeman. “Today we have the number one market share of plug-in electric passenger cars in the EU in new car sales, third globally. We have a policy framework in place to promote the electrification of road transport, which also addresses heavy-duty vehicles. Our purchase subsidies for e-buses will be extended to also include e-trucks and working machines.

And I am happy to announce that Sweden will join the Drive to Zero campaign focusing on heavy duty vehicles.”

“Finland aims at climate neutrality by 2035 and we need many more zero-emission commercial vehicles on the roads. Finland develops e-fuels, sustainable battery manufacturing and automated transport to make things happen,” said Riku Huttunen, Director-General of the Ministry of Economic Affairs and Employment of Finland. “To recover from COVID19 crisis the Finnish Government is increasing investments in the electric charging infrastructure.“

“Today’s announcement by several new nations to join the Drive to Zero campaign reflects a rapid growing awareness about the near-term commercial prospects of zero-emission trucks and buses. By joining the program and coordinating policies across nations, we’ll be able to more quickly achieve global economies of scale,” said John Boesel, President and CEO of clean transportation technology accelerator CALSTART.

As part of this global groundswell, Drive to Zero was also formally recognized today as an official campaign of the Clean Energy Ministerial, and part of CEM’s Electric Vehicles Initiative, to focus specifically on commercial vehicles.

“It’s time to transform transport. The new Global Drive to Zero campaign shows the ongoing commitment of the Clean Energy Ministerial’s community to accelerate the adoption of clean road vehicles – this time with a much-needed focus on vans and trucks,” said Dan Dorner, Head, Clean Energy Ministerial Secretariat.

Today’s CEM events were hosted by Riyadh, Saudi Arabia and held virtually due to COVID-19. During the CEM11 pre-event today led by the International Energy Agency in partnership with the Clean Energy Ministerial and CALSTART, participants also hailed the tenth year of the Clean Energy Ministerial’s Electric Vehicles Initiative (EVI). EVI is aimed at accelerating the adoption of electric vehicles worldwide.

These growing international efforts to catalyze the zero-emission commercial vehicle market come in the wake of a number of new policies aimed at putting more zero-emission trucks, buses and other commercial vehicles on the road.

The Netherlands is creating a network of as many as 30 zero-emission zones in cities across the nation that will restrict traffic to zero-emission vehicles. Norway has created zero-emission distribution hubs in Oslo to allow delivery trucks in the city to charge and load. Germany is requiring all fueling stations to provide EV charging and investing on electrified roadways. Japan is supporting a network of hydrogen refueling stations that will support zero-emission commercial vehicles. Chile has committed to a major expansion of zero emission bus routes in Santiago.

In the United States in June, the California Air Resources Board, an influential sub-national Drive to Zero partner, adopted the landmark Advanced Clean Trucks rule, or ACT. ACT calls on commercial truck and van manufacturers to begin selling zero-emission vehicles by 2024 in California. Under the ambitious policy, all new commercial trucks and vans sold in the state must be zero-emissions by 2045.

“Although ACT was adopted in California, in practice it reaches beyond the Golden State’s borders,” said Dr. Cristiano Façanha, Global Director of the Drive to Zero program. “California is sending strong signals that will accelerate the global market for zero-emission commercial vehicles. The manufacturers that sell their vehicles in California will invest aggressively in zero-emission technologies. They will, naturally, want to see as high of a return on their investment as possible. Consequently, the manufacturers will bring their zero-emission technologies to other global markets.”

As a sign of the strong sub-national support in the U.S., shortly after ACT’s adoption, governors from 15 states – California, Colorado, Connecticut, Hawaii, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, New Jersey, New York, North Carolina, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, Vermont and Washington – and the District of Columbia agreed to collaboratively develop strategies to build strong markets for zero-emission commercial vehicles.

“This multi-region, bipartisan commitment demonstrates the groundswell of support zero-emission commercial vehicles enjoy across the United States. A growing number of policymakers are understanding the viability of the technology. And they appreciate advancing zero-emission commercial vehicles provides enormous air quality benefits to low income communities,” said Bill Van Amburg, Executive Vice President of CALSTART. For more information about the Multi-State Medium- and Heavy-duty Zero-Emission Vehicle Memorandum of Understanding, visit NESCAUM’s website.

In addition to the new national government partners, today Swedish commercial vehicle manufacturer Scania also took the pledge to Drive to Zero.

“Private sector innovators like Scania who understand the jobs, economic, air quality, and climate benefits zero-emission vehicles deliver are not content to wait and watch the market. They lead,” said Dr. Façanha. “Achieving Drive to Zero’s ambitious yet achievable zero-emission urban truck and bus goals requires the commitment and collaboration of governments, fleet owners, and commercial vehicle manufacturers like Scania.”

Other Drive to Zero “pledge partners” include top manufacturers, fleets, government, infrastructure and other leaders like BYD, New Flyer Industries, Arrival, IKEA’s Ingka Group, Ryder, Black and Veatch, Siemens, the California Air Resources Board, the cities of New York, Los Angeles, Oslo, Vancouver and many others. For a full list of Drive to Zero pledge partners, visit our website.

Drive to Zero’s goal is to drive market viability for zero-emission commercial vehicles in key vehicle segments in urban communities by 2025 and achieve full market penetration by 2040. It is built upon a technology strategy, called the beachhead strategy, that identifies the commercial vehicle market segments where zero- and near-zero emission technology is likely to succeed first. Those early successes drive pathways into new segments where the technology can flourish next.

During the CEM11 pre-event, Drive to Zero unveiled a new video explaining the program’s strategy and its reach, while featuring clips of zero-emission commercial refuse trucks, delivery vans, buses and trucks on the road today. To view Drive to Zero’s new video, visit our website.

CALSTART | Changing transportation for good

A national nonprofit consortium with offices in New York, Michigan, Colorado and California, CALSTART partners with 250+ member company and agency innovators to build a prosperous, efficient and clean high-tech transportation industry. We knock out barriers to modernization and the adoption of clean vehicles. CALSTART is changing transportation for good.