NORTHAMPTON, MA / ACCESSWIRE / October 25, 2022 / Ceres and major companies operating in North Carolina applaud the administration of Gov. Roy Cooper for establishing the state as a leader in the adoption of electric trucks, vans, and other large vehicles.
Gov. Cooper today signed an executive order directing state officials to begin a rulemaking process to adopt the Advanced Clean Trucks (ACT) regulation, among other directives aimed at lowering transportation pollution. The move puts North Carolina in position to become the seventh state in the U.S. - and the first in the Southeast - to adopt the ACT rule, which will require manufacturers of medium- and heavy-duty vehicles to sell electric models at an increasing rate over time.
"Companies are looking to electrify their vehicle fleets and their supply chains in order to meet critical climate goals, save money on fuel and maintenance, and reduce air pollution for their workers and the communities they operate in," said Alli Gold Roberts, senior director of state policy, Ceres. "As this technology advances and takes greater hold in the economy, the ACT rule will provide a clear pathway for the industry to supply companies with the vehicles they want. North Carolina is again proving itself as a national climate leader by becoming an early adopter of this business-friendly rule."
The ACT rule has attracted widespread corporate support as a growing number of companies and other fleet owners look to adopt electric vehicles. The policy would help ensure sufficient supply for the zero-emission medium- and heavy-duty vehicles that companies increasingly demand to reduce fuel and maintenance costs and make progress on their own climate and sustainability goals. That demand is highly likely to grow following the passage of the federal Inflation Reduction Act, which includes substantial tax credits for the purchase of large commercial trucks and vans.
More than 85 major companies, employers, and investors joined a letter organized by Ceres in 2021, calling on state policymakers across the country to adopt the ACT rule. In a separate letter in June, 30 companies and organizations wrote to the Cooper administration calling for its adoption in North Carolina.
"Nestlé strongly encourages the nation's governors to adopt the ACT rule and dramatically expand the market for zero-emission commercial vehicles," said Megan Villarreal, manager of policy and public affairs, Nestlé. "Companies like ours know we must work to electrify our supply chains in order to build cleaner logistics and transportation networks. Advancing freight and delivery services at the scale necessary to help tackle public health and climate challenges requires strong state and federal policies. The ACT rule will help us and those in our supply chain continue to make progress on this challenge, while also building out the trucking industry of the future."
"As a craft brewer with distribution channels across the U.S., New Belgium Brewing strongly supports the Advanced Clean Trucks rule, and we are grateful that the Cooper Administration has continued to lead the way on clean air through clean trucks in North Carolina," said Katie Wallace, Chief ESG Officer, New Belgium Brewing Co. "The ACT rule will help us achieve our goal of operating a clean fleet close to home in North Carolina and help our partners across the country transition to zero-emission trucks that will clean the air, reduce climate pollution, and continue to efficiently move the supplies we need and the beer our customers love."
"Siemens has a strong history in North Carolina, with more than 3,000 employees working across the state and our Electrification and Automation manufacturing hub in Wendell. More and more, companies are beginning to make the shift to electric fleets and want policies put in place that will make this transition easier. At Siemens, we have a goal to electrify our 10,000 vehicle fleet and achieve our net zero vision by 2030," said John DeBoer, head of Siemens eMobility North America. "The ACT rule is one critical step toward this greater electrification journey, as it will expand the market and help get a more diverse array of electric vehicles on our nation's roads. By adopting the ACT rule, states like North Carolina can establish themselves and the companies that do businesses on their roads as clean transportation leaders-while also bringing health and equitable economic benefits to their communities."
The ACT rule is the latest in a series of actions by the Cooper administration to accelerate vehicle electrification. Those actions include signing a memorandum of understanding that pledged to work with 16 additional states on strategies to accelerate the adoption of electric vehicles and setting a goal for 50% of new vehicles sold in the state in 2030 to be electric.
The policy also keeps with the Cooper administration's commitment to addressing environmental justice issues. Transportation is the leading cause of greenhouse gas emissions in the U.S., which warm the planet and fuel heat waves, drought, and storms. Although they represent just 5% of vehicles on U.S. roads and account for just 10% of all miles driven, medium- and heavy-duty vehicles are responsible for nearly a quarter of climate pollution from the nation's transportation sector. They also disproportionately cause air pollution that leads to significant health issues such as heart and lung disease, especially in neighborhoods that border highways, major roads, and shipping centers, and which are often lower-income communities and communities of color.
Supporters of the ACT rule say it will have a greater impact as more states join by setting high standards across regional markets, reducing costs by spurring production and sales at larger scales, and helping to spark the build-out of necessary charging infrastructure. California, Massachusetts, New Jersey, New York, Oregon, and Washington have already adopted the ACT rule, and additional states are expected to do so in 2023.
Ceres is a nonprofit organization working with the most influential capital market leaders to solve the world's greatest sustainability challenges. Through our powerful networks and global collaborations of investors, companies and nonprofits, we drive action and inspire equitable market-based and policy solutions throughout the economy to build a just and sustainable future. For more information, visit ceres.org and follow @CeresNews.
Media Contact: Helen Booth-Tobin
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