Subsidies to help cities reduce their commercial emissions

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Three cities are moving forward with community plans to reduce emissions from delivery vehicles and heavy vehicles.

Chicago, San Diego and San Jose, California have been selected for the new launch Providing zero emission communities Natural Resources Defense Council (NRDC) program.

Local community groups in these cities will receive $ 100,000 each for their partnership efforts to develop action plans towards the goal of 100% zero-emission commercial vehicles by 2030. Cities will also receive support in Nature of industry and policy experts, from organizations like CALSTART, International Council on Clean Transportation and NRDC, said Nadia Perl, West Regional Communications Manager for NRDC.


The San Diego Association of Governments (SANDAG), in partnership with the City of San Diego, has established a regional infrastructure master plan for zero-emission medium and heavy-duty vehicles. Funding from the NRDC grant will help ensure that “the plan reflects the needs and perspectives of the community,” said Jerry McCormick, senior public information officer for the City of San Diego.

“This grant will strengthen the capacity of the Environmental Health Coalition and its partners to mobilize residents around the Blueprint and ensure that the community is a part of the decision-making process,” he explained.

Much of the focus will be on port communities, which are exposed to higher levels of automobile pollution.

The Community Emissions Reduction Plan (CERP) guides San Diego towards its zero-emission targets, which include ambitious zero-emission targets, such as reducing diesel particulate matter by 80% from 2018 levels by 2031. In addition, heavy trucks crossing port communities is expected to be 100 percent zero emissions five years ahead of State of California requirements. CERP also sets out a goal of establishing four heavy truck charging infrastructure locations in port communities by 2024.

“One of the main challenges in achieving these goals will be to create a network of charging and refueling infrastructure for new zero-emission vehicles and to identify the necessary funding,” said McCormick.

The Delivering Zero Emissions community grant and the region’s zero-emission medium and heavy-duty infrastructure master plan will guide planning for these infrastructure investments, officials said.

Chicago will also focus its zero-emission community efforts on neighborhoods crowded with commercial traffic, as well as an electric cargo bike pilot program for deliveries and a program to encourage businesses to switch to electric vehicle fleets.

San Jose, meanwhile, will use grant funding to create an urban freight task force with the private sector, launch an equity task force with community members, and develop a neighborhood pilot program. zero emissions.

Some 25 cities were considered for grant funding and were assessed against a range of parameters such as co-ownership and collaboration with community partners, commitment to equity and realistic ambition and impact of ‘by June 2022, Perl said.

Funding for the program comes from the William and Flora Hewlett Foundation, ClimateWorks and Tempest Advisors. The implicit ability of each of the three cities to receive funding was to move quickly from the acceleration phase to a more self-sustaining project.

“The intention is for this work to continue well beyond this one-year accelerator program,” Perl said in an email. “Each of these cities is already working to reduce pollution to their freight and freight transport systems to zero, and this program is designed to strengthen those efforts. Involving community partners will help build long-term political support and ensure programs benefit communities most affected by diesel pollution and other harms.

Editor’s Note: A change has been made to reflect the correct name of the Natural Resources Defense Council.

Skip Descant writes on smart cities, the Internet of Things, transportation, and more. He has spent over 12 years reporting for dailies in Mississippi, Arkansas, Louisiana and California. He lives in downtown Sacramento.

See more stories by Skip Descant


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