How Biden’s election could kickstart U.S. adoption of zero-emission vehicles

November 11, 2020 by  
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How Biden’s election could kickstart U.S. adoption of zero-emission vehicles Katie Fehrenbacher Wed, 11/11/2020 – 00:15 Relief. Most of us in clean economy circles are feeling it after the historic and protracted win by America’s President-elect Joe Biden and VP-elect Kamala Harris over the weekend.  The industries that make up the zero-emission vehicles sector — infrastructure providers, automakers, mobility startups — are one of the sectors that could gain the most from the Biden win. Transportation is the largest source of greenhouse gas emissions in the United States, and a Biden administration that takes the threat of climate change seriously will make it a priority to tackle transportation emissions.  Here are five things I’m watching for in a Biden bump that would accelerate ZEVs across the U.S.: Trump’s weakening of the auto emissions standards is toast: Earlier this year, the Trump administration officially weakened the federal auto emission standards that the Obama administration had enacted. The Trump administration called for just a 1.5 percent increase in carbon emissions standards per year through model year 2026, while the Obama plan called for a 5 percent yearly increase.  Expect a Biden administration to not only revert back to the Obama-era emissions standards but potentially strengthen them considerably, moving more aggressively toward zero emissions. California also sued the Trump administration, attempting to protect its right to set stricter auto emission standards than the weakened one. You can expect this battle, too, to die on the vine as the Biden administration is not likely to challenge California’s clean air waiver.  The U.S. could follow California’s ZEV mandates: If the federal government follows California lead, it already could use enacted ZEV mandates and incentives as a model for the U.S. The World Resources Institute’s Dan Lashof advocates that the Biden administration should set a clean car standard that models California Gov. Gavin Newsom’s recently enacted executive order to ban new gas car sales by 2035. The U.S. also could implement zero-emission commercial vehicles through legislation such as the Advanced Clean Truck Rule, WRI notes, that would set timelines to convert trucks and buses to zero emissions. Aggressive? Yep. But we can hope! Look for new transportation and clean air leadership: With a new administration comes new leaders that will have a dramatic effect on the shape of building back climate and environmental regulations. Politico has a great rundown on some potential Biden appointees. The ones that sustainable transportation advocates will be most interested in: California Air Resources Board Chair Mary Nichols told GreenBiz at VERGE 20 last month that she’d say “yes” if Biden called on her to help rebuild the EPA. She’s supposedly the front-runner. Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti is reported to be the leading candidate for Transportation Secretary. Garcetti has committed to moving Los Angeles to zero-carbon transportation by 2050. Ernie Moniz and Arun Majumdar , two former Department of Energy leaders, are reported to be in the running for top spots in the DOE.  Watch for a ZEV infrastructure build-out: Earlier this year, the Biden administration revealed a $2 trillion climate plan that specifically calls out investments in electric vehicle charging infrastructure to help build back the economy. On Biden’s transition website , the administration says it will create millions of new jobs funding new infrastructure and investing in the future of a domestic auto industry. The administration says it also will fund zero-emission public transit in cities — from light rail to better bike infrastructure to buses.  Anne Smart, vice president of public policy for EV charging company ChargePoint, said: “In his campaign platform, President-elect Biden called for the deployment EV charging stations across the nation. Now we have the opportunity to turn this promise into action through legislative initiatives such as the Clean Corridors Act , which will drive significant investment in EV charging and create jobs across the country.”   Non-profit Veloz, focused on electric vehicle advocacy in California, said it hopes to see a Biden administration overcome the three remaining barriers to the electrification of transportation; upfront cost; building out charging infrastructure; and increasing public awareness. Hope for stimulus for EV buses: If the federal government were able to provide stimulus incentive money for cities to convert their bus fleets to electric, it could be an effective stimulus strategy, noted WRI’s Lashof in a call with media Monday. Why? EV buses already can save cities money on fuel and maintenance costs, and also reduce air pollution, but it’s just the upfront cost of the EV bus that’s the barrier. If stimulus money can eliminate the extra cost between a diesel bus and an EV bus — the way incentives do in some states such as California — the ZEV transition could happen more quickly. What do you think? How do you think a Biden administration could kick start the zero-emission vehicle revolution? Drop me a note: katie@greenbiz.com . Topics Transportation & Mobility Carbon Policy Zero Emissions Electric Vehicles Public Transit EV Charging Featured in featured block (1 article with image touted on the front page or elsewhere) Off Duration 0 Sponsored Article Off President-elect Joe Biden walking with supporters at a pre-Wing Ding march from Molly McGowan Park in Clear Lake, Iowa, in May 2020. Shutterstock Pix Arena Close Authorship

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How Biden’s election could kickstart U.S. adoption of zero-emission vehicles

Trend: Commercial buildings go all-electric

March 2, 2020 by  
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All signs point to the next generation of commercial buildings becoming all-electric.

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Trend: Commercial buildings go all-electric

10 questions on EVs for the CEO of Portland General Electric

February 18, 2020 by  
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How electric vehicles can be a net benefit to the grid.

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10 questions on EVs for the CEO of Portland General Electric

Rolls-Royce unveils prototype for world’s fastest electric plane

January 15, 2020 by  
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Innovation is the name of the game for luxury industry leaders like Rolls-Royce, so it’s no surprise they have a variety of sustainable travel projects in the works. Last month, Rolls-Royce released its newest project — an all-electric plane set to take flight later this spring. Dubbed ACCEL (Accelerating the Electrification of Flight), the initiative is aimed at not only using electrification, but setting records in the industry, including a top speed of over 300 miles per hour. The current record for an all-electric plane is 210 miles per hour, so the goal is a leap in both power and performance. Plus, the plane is set to bring an  eco-friendly option  to a traditionally high-polluting industry. With the densest battery pack ever used in an electric plane, ACCEL should be able to travel around 200 miles per charge. For reference, that’s the distance between London and Paris. The three electric engines are expected to produce a constant 500 horsepower with a quiet ride and zero emissions. Related: AeroMobil reveals flying taxi that transforms from car to electric airplane Rob Watson, Director of Rolls-Royce Electrical said: “Building the world’s fastest all-electric aircraft is nothing less than a revolutionary step change in aviation and we are delighted to unveil the ACCEL project plane. This is not only an important step towards the world-record attempt but will also help to develop Rolls-Royce’s capabilities and ensure that we are at the forefront of developing technology that can play a fundamental role in enabling the transition to a  low carbon global economy .” Rolls-Royce has undertaken this endeavor with a host of partners. YASA brings a history of electric motor manufacturing, and an eager start-up, Electroflight, provides technology and research. The team also includes the Aerospace Technology Institute (ATI) and Department for Business, Energy & Industrial Strategy and Innovate UK. Funding for the plane is subsidized by the government of the United Kingdom where the blue and white one-seater prototype was unveiled in December. Business Minister Nadhim Zahawi said: “The UK has a proud heritage and enviable worldwide reputation for advances in aviation technology. The electrification of flight has the potential to revolutionise the way we travel and transform aviation for decades to come – ensuring we can travel worldwide while maintaining a low carbon footprint . Backed by Government funding, Rolls-Royce is pushing the boundaries even further, and this new innovation could become the fastest electric plane ever.” Continued testing is underway with the goal of making an initial run for the speed record in the spring of 2020. + Rolls-Royce Images via Rolls-Royce

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Rolls-Royce unveils prototype for world’s fastest electric plane

Offshore wind is gearing up for liftoff

January 9, 2020 by  
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The source of electricity has enormous potential that has yet to be tapped in the U.S.

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Offshore wind is gearing up for liftoff

Why a measured shift to electric vehicles would benefit the US

December 3, 2019 by  
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There is no point in putting forward an EV plan that is so aggressive that it cannot be implemented.

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Why a measured shift to electric vehicles would benefit the US

Southern California Edison’s Bill Chiu on how electric grids benefit the private sector

November 11, 2019 by  
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The state of California has ambitious goals to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, which motivates various sectors to realign their efforts. The managing director of grid resilience at Southern California Edison (SCE), Bill Chiu, shares how he is driving an “existential transformation” for the electricity supply company by implementing a roadmap called the Clean Power and Electrification Pathway to reduce greenhouse gas emissions.

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Southern California Edison’s Bill Chiu on how electric grids benefit the private sector

Build a better battery for wind and solar storage, and the energy sector will beat a path to your door

October 22, 2019 by  
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As demand for renewable electricity surges, so too does demand for efficient, safe and sustainable storage

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Build a better battery for wind and solar storage, and the energy sector will beat a path to your door

Build a better battery for wind and solar storage, and the energy sector will beat a path to your door

October 22, 2019 by  
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As demand for renewable electricity surges, so too does demand for efficient, safe and sustainable storage

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Build a better battery for wind and solar storage, and the energy sector will beat a path to your door

Low-carbon cities are a $24 trillion opportunity

October 22, 2019 by  
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From urban density to energy-efficient appliances, cutting emissions and making money has never made more sense.

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Low-carbon cities are a $24 trillion opportunity

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