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Truckipedia Blog Category - A Greener BC and the Influence of Alternative Fuels

21
Apr 2022
Electric Trucking

With so many possibilities now and on the horizon, the question becomes what impact these fuels can have on creating a greener BC and what role the transport industry can play.

Alternative Fuels – Part of a CleanBC

An impressive 96% of BC electricity is clean – generated from renewable resources like hydro, the province’s most important source of power generation. Alternative fuels like electricity, compressed natural gas and hydrogen fuel cells that make use of these clean resources to power passenger and transport vehicles have a substantial role to play in creating an even greener BC, with net-zero emissions by 2050.

Across the province, fleet operators are modernizing and, with it, minimizing their impact on the environment. In some cases, it is mandates that are moving technology forward, such as efforts to move fleets out of aging equipment (10-15 years old) and into newer vehicles. The advancements in the last 15 years alone to reduce the carbon footprint of vehicles are staggering.

In other cases, it is incentives offered by the provincial and federal governments, BC Hydro and FortisBC that are expediting the adoption of these alternative fuels. Among them:

  • The CleanBC Go Electric Fleets Program provides training, advisory services and financial support to help fleets transition to zero-emission vehicles (ZEV). Fleets can access rebates for ZEV readiness assessments, infrastructure assessments and upgrades, and the purchase and installation of charging infrastructure to support fleets.
  • The Specialty Use Vehicle Incentive (SUVI) is designed to incentivize the adoption of ZEVs for a variety of applications, including medium- and heavy-duty vehicles. Purchasers or lessees of eligible specialty use vehicles can receive a post-purchase/lease rebate up to 35% of the MSRP.

Our Role in a Cleaner BC

Companies like First Truck Centre that sell and service the fleets of trucks and busses you see on BC roads also have a significant role to play in environmentally friendly practices. With all these technologies moving into the market, we take on the role of educator for our customers, many of whom are being challenged by leadership teams and their own clients to reduce their environmental footprint.

In addition to curating information, we maintain an excellent relationship with groups like BC Hydro and FortisBC so that we have a full picture of the existing and planned infrastructure that will support the movement to greener vehicles. We then act as our customers’ specialists on alternative fuels, understanding their bigger plans and working with them to identify the possibilities and opportunities that will be most effective for their particular set of circumstances.

The Opportunity

The most significant areas of opportunity in BC for the adoption of alternative fuels exist in the lower mainland and other urban cores, where there is already a great deal of infrastructure and where fleet travel occurs most frequently during normal business hours. For these reasons, manufacturers like Daimler and others have targeted these areas as hotbeds for adoption of their alternative fuel vehicles.

Because of the required infrastructure, long-haul and more remote trucking will be further down the line in adoption, but the day will come in most transport sectors where alternative fuels are prevalent.  All the work that is being done today is creating a tremendous opportunity to achieve even greater environmental targets. By working together, we can all take advantage and further the goal of creating a greener British Columbia.

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