Ten truths about electric trucks and buses

Lice-cycle GHG emissions

BETs have the lowest life-cycle GHG emissions

This is true from 16-40t trucks, according to a study by Ricardo Research (2020), which compared emissions of the differing drivetrain technologies based on a WTW approach. The emission-saving potential of EVs increase when entirely powered by renewable energy (up to 81%) compared to a fossil-powered alternative as shown by study ICCT (2021) undertaken in passenger cars. As BETs have outstanding energy efficiency, lifecycle emissions decrease with every additional kilometre driven, meaning that long-distance trucks have particularly high emission-saving potential.

Ricardo Research (2020)IICCT (2021)
Energy efficiency

BETs offer a dramatic improvement of energy efficiency

BETs offer a dramatic improvement of energy efficiency, i.e. the ability to drive a greater number of kilometres on the same amount of energy. The JRC, EUCAR and Concawe (2020) have updated their joint evaluation of the WTW energy use and GHG emissions for a wide range of powertrain options. Considering only zero-emission technologies on WTW basis, BETs using green electricity - both regional and long-haul - are 2.6 times more energy efficient than the green hydrogen-powered fuel cell equivalent. Although synthetic fuels were evaluated for cars rather than trucks, as an indication a battery electric car using green electricity is 6.9 times more energy efficient than a combustion vehicle using e-fuel.

JRC, EUCAR and Concawe (2020)

GHGs and air pollutant

BEBs do not produce local GHGs and air pollutant emissions

BEBs do not produce local GHGs and air pollutant emissions, providing considerable health benefits, particularly in cities. Because they are powered by electricity, the higher powertrain efficiency means that BEBs emit 73% less CO2 equivalent than diesels, rising to 90% if powered by 100% renewable sources. In contrast (according to ICCT (2022)),CNG CO2 emissions are nearly 30% lower than a diesel, but its higher energy consumption - 24-50% per kilometre - reduces this advantage. In addition, methane is a potent GHG with a global warming potential more than 80 times greater than CO2 over a 20-year period; unintended leakages during extraction and transport further exacerbate the situation.

ICCT (2022)
Intermodality

BETs will contribute to the further greening of intermodal transport

BETs will contribute to the further greening of intermodal transport, as well as improving the overall energy efficiency of freight logistics. Synergies between rail, road transport and inland waterways are crucial to the logistics system. These offer benefits for the whole supply chain, as intermodal transport helps reduce congestion in urban areas while potentially increasing capacity in and around cities. Tangible examples of intermodal links have been successfully deployed in Paris’ metropolitan area. Companies such as IKEA and Franprix supply stores in Paris are using a combination of electric ships and electric road transport solutions for the last-mile segment.

Electricity grid

With smart grid technologies, the grid would need little adaptation for BETs and BEBs.

With smart grid technologies, the grid would need little adaptation for BETs and BEBs. Uni- and bi-directional charging enables a double optimization of the load at the depot. Optimising the grid connection and allowing the monetisation of the vehicles' flexibility capabilities makes them valuable assets, even when parked: it also provides the grid with supplementary battery capacity. V2G is performed at much lower power levels than in regenerative braking or fast charging. It can even slow down age-related battery degradation.

Cost

By 2030, 99.6% of new BETs will be cheaper to own and run than diesel trucks

By 2030, 99.6% of new BETs will be cheaper to own and run than diesel trucks while carrying the same weight of goods over the same distance and journey time, according to a study by TNO (2022). This study is based on the TCO, the most important economic indicator for a truck. It covers those deployed in urban and regional delivery over distances of 300 km as well as long-distance trucks travelling 800km/day. Due to the savings from using electricity rather than diesel, the cost-saving potential of BETs increases with every additional kilometre driven, meaning that by 2035, long-distance trucks will be the most cost-efficient solution in Europe.

study by TNO (2022)

Investment costs of BEBs

Higher investment costs of BEBs offset by lower electricity consumption and maintenance costs.

Similarly, the higher investment costs of BEBs are offset by their lower electricity consumption and maintenance costs (in Spain and Latin America in 2021 and in Italy, US and UK by 2023). Bocconi University and Enel Foundation (2021) integrated well-known TCO (the initial investment in purchasing vehicles and the charging infrastructure, plus the operational and maintenance costs peculiar to BEBs) with circular economy revenue streams, by the second life of batteries and V2G. This explains why buses are now the fastest-growing zero-emission vehicle segment, making up 23% of new city buses in 2021, up from 16% in 2020. Considering the revenues from V2G and second life, BEBs are more cost effective than diesel and CNG buses.

Payload

Urban and regional trucks can already have as much payload capacity as their diesel counterparts

Urban and regional trucks can already have as much payload capacity as their diesel counterparts today, according to a recent study by TNO. While the battery of an electric long-haul truck currently may weigh several tonnes, depending on its size, the so-called 'ZEV weight allowance' grants an additional two tonnes to zero emission trucks on European roads. This, along with improving vehicle energy efficiency and battery energy density, will eliminate any payload loss by the end of the decade, even for long-distance trucks with 800km range.

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BETs already have more than sufficient range to cover freight transport routes in Europe

BETs already have more than sufficient range to cover freight transport routes in Europe, something that will continue to improve. With the compulsory 45-minute break every 4.5 hours, and given that they have a maximum permitted speed of 90km/h, trucks will never drive more than 400 km without having to stop. Tesla has begun deliveries of the ‘Tesla Semi’, a clean-sheet design BET with a real-world range of 800km when fully loaded. The EU’s Weights & Dimensions Directive allows ZETs to be increased by two tonnes over that of diesel trucks. This allowance alone already increases the payload-neutral range of electric trucks by over 300km.

Extreme conditions

BETs are as competent as diesel trucks in extreme cold.

BETs are as competent as diesel trucks in extreme cold. In February 2021, Volvo Trucks, ABB and Vattenfall - together with a local mining company - ran a trial on replacing the diesel transport of iron ore with BETs. The ore is taken from a North Sweden mine to the railway transfer station, in temperatures of -30C°. The BETs were used for the journey from the mine to the transfer station where they could unload the cargo while recharging batteries following a 280km round trip normally undertaken by diesel-powered vehicles. The Polar Winter Project proved the feasibility of electric transportation in extreme conditions. The BETs were able to drive the entire distance - including 140km with 14t of ore on board, at temperatures as low as -32C° - while taking the same amount of time as the diesel trucks.


Click the button

BET       Battery Electric Truck

GHG      Greenhouse Gas

EV         Electric Vehicle

WTW    Wheel-to-Well

BEB       Battery Electric Bus

CNG      Compressed Natural Gas

V2G       Vehicle-to-Grid

HDV      Heavy-Duty Vehicle

LFP        Lithium iron phosphate

TCO       Total Cost of Ownership

ZEV       Zero-Emission Vehicle

ZET        Zero-Emission Truck

JRC        Joint Research Center


CO2 Standards for HDVs: Our open letter to Commissioner Breton to boost clean tech industries

Open letter

Cleantech companies and civil society see ambitious truck CO2 standards as catalyst for growing EU supply chains

Adressed to Commissioner Thierry Breton

Our open letter on clean trucksOur recommendations to the European Commission

Dear Commissioner Breton,

We, a large group of industries and civil society organisations stakeholders from the freight, e-mobility and clean tech supply chain, welcome your efforts to respond to the U.S. IRA and boost investments into sustainable and clean European technologies. As we are actively working on the decarbonisation of our industry branches, we fully support the targets of the European Green Deal and Europe’s 2030 and 2050 climate targets.

The Smart & Sustainable Mobility Strategy sets a clear goal for Europe to reduce transport emissions by 90% in 2050. Decarbonising freight transport will require reducing its dependency on fossil fuels, shifting a larger share of traffic to more sustainable transport modes and finally through the internalisation of external costs. The upcoming CO2 performance standards for heavy-duty vehicles (HDV) will stimulate the investments required to achieve the first of these objectives. Cleantech in the EU road freight and heavy-duty vehicle infrastructure sectors is in the early stages. By mirroring the new targets for trucks to the blueprint Europe has just set out for its automotive sector, these sectors can surf on and amplify each other’s supply chains. Mandating around half of new trucks to be zero emission from 2030 and almost all of them from 2035 will shore up demand for battery cells made in EU gigafactories and staffed with EU workers. A balanced policy mix matches increased governmental investment support with such greater demands from, and clarity on the shared end goals for, our EU industries. This will help greening homegrown EU freight sector that can compete with, and ultimately again overcome, competition from across the oceans.

Today, zero-emission trucks are still produced in small numbers. Ambitious standards for trucks can achieve what has been done for cars: seriously scaling up the supply, thereby bringing down the cost per unit. Whilst the CO2 standards as a regulatory tool safeguard the roadmap for a rapid green transition, the subsidies funnel money directly into the sustainable freight and mobility solutions to enable and ensure a thriving European clean tech industry. That way all actors, especially smaller and medium-sized companies, remain competitive and can be part of Europe’s green transition.

We, the undersigned organisations, see ambitious CO2 targets for trucks as an essential means to ensure EU cleantech investments are boosted and channelled into sustainable road freight technologies. This complements the parallel push to switch traffic to more sustainable modes of transport and the internalisation of external costs. Green technologies – from renewable energy to battery production – will secure and provide jobs in Europe, now and in the future. Strong CO2 standards provide certainty to our European industries in a challenging and changing world. And they utilise the momentum of progressive frontrunners that have shown electric trucks are part of Europe’s flagship clean technologies.

 


EPBD: 3 Pillars to ensure the private charging of EVs

3 Pillars to ensure the private charging of EVs

As 90% of all charging takes place at home or in the workplace and 80% of the EU’s current building stock will still be in use by 2050, private charging is key to the growth of electromobility. Only an ambitious revision of the EPBD (Art. 12) can make it happen.

Importance of private charging
for multifamily dwellings

Pre-cabling

If a building is not pre-cabled in the construction or major renovation phase, it can be 9 times more expensive to install cables in the latter stage. It'd lead to highly cumbersome discussions with project developers which can take over 6 months in problematic cases to install a charging station. The pre-cabling should cover both technical and electrical installations for the seamless future installation of recharging points.

for users and grid

Smart functionalities

Smart charging (uni- and bi-directional) can reduce one-third of the EV users' electricity bill. Moreover, it would facilitate the integration of the renewable energies into the grid, reduce the electricity consumption during peak hours and provide flexibility services to the system.

For existing buildings

Right-to-plug

Those advantages would not be reached without removing administrative barriers to installing a charging station, especially the delays in multifamily buildings. Time between application and installation should not exceed 3 months.


Innovative projects of Platform members

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EU Year of skills: making the Green Deal works for everyone

EU Year of Skills
Our recommendations to make Green Deal works for everyone

A 2021 study undertaken by the BCG looked into the opportunities and challenges  created by the transition of the automotive industry towards electrification. The study shows that shift to EVs will have only a minor net impact on jobs through to 2030.

The relatively small net impact should not, however, obscure the massive structural changes resulting from electrification. Changes in production will modify both the skills requirements and distribution of labour. Over the next decade, direct employment in carmakers and ICE-focused suppliers will decrease by 5%, while the workforce in adjacent industries’ will increase by 34%. On top of this large transfer from core automotive industries to adjacent industries, a further 40k jobs will be created each year in construction and civil works for adapting energy production and distribution infrastructures needed for electrification.

By 2030, the job profile of 2.4mn positions will change, with different degrees of training needs to prepare them for future job demands, which means 42% of all employees in the core automotive and adjacent industries will have dedicated training needs. Specifically, 1.6mnwill require retraining, while remaining in their current position; another 610k will need requalification while remaining in the same industry cluster; and 225k people will need support to requalify for work in other industries outside the automotive ecosystem. Some regions – those more dependent on the traditional automotive sector – will feel this impact more acutely, so it is vital that governments provide policies and support to help those regions adapt to the coming change.

The right political and regulatory choices will help workers fully grab the upskilling opportunity created by the transition to electromobility. To support workers during this transition: the EU, governments and companies should prioritise programmes that invest in the education, training, upskilling and reskilling of the labour force to capitalise on new opportunities, raising the bar on employment conditions, to ensure no one is left behind.

The social changes triggered by the Fit for 55 should be tackled with similar levels of ambition by empowering companies, governments and regional authorities to equip the workforce with new skillsets.

Workers in the automotive sector should benefit from a policy framework similar to the Just Transition Fund, Just Transition Platform and Just Transition Mechanism for the energy-intensive industries and assist industrial stakeholders, local, regional and national authorities to:

For industrial stakeholders, support will be needed to design requalification and upskilling programmes and hiring as well as restructuring programmes. Rapid growth of adjacent industries (like battery manufacturing and charging stations operations and production) should be underpinned by ambitious requalification and upskilling and targets. Support should be provided, particularly for SMEs and fast-growing enterprises, as they will lack the analytics and training resources of bigger companies.

Relocations should be avoided where possible by adapting existing production plants, and training for new skills where they are needed. Via their industrial, attractiveness and educations competences, local and regional authorities will play a key role in addressing the knowledge gaps in the workforce. The new ESF+ should be an instrument for supporting local and regional authorities.

Governments need to perform ‘whole-of-economy’ workforce planning in close cooperation with regional and local authorities and industrial stakeholders to:

  • Help employers and employees manage their transitions.
  • Tailor educational curricula towards new automotive technologies.
  • Build new career and employment platforms to help workers navigate to jobs and training opportunities.
  • Increase student seats at universities in new automotive technologies and production/process engineering.
Source: https://web-assets.bcg.com/82/0a/17e745504e46b5981b74fadba825/is-e-mobility-a-green-boost.pdf 


Critical Raw Materials Act: Our response to the EC's consultation.

Critical Raw Materials Act
Our feedbacks to the European Commission

The vital transition away from fossil fuels towards cleaner technologies for transport  will drive, depending on the technology, the demand for raw materials like lithium, nickel. Whilst some CRMs are available in the EU, Europe is largely dependent on third countries for mining, processing, refining and recycling, even more so in the case of batteries needed for EVs and considering the current geostrategic tensions. We would therefore strongly welcome a CRM package beginning of 2023 to tackle our three concerns:

With the e-mobility transition, the EU is lacking an EV value chain beyond battery manufacturing – i.e. extraction, refining, processing, and recycling, which today is located in third countries – and a coherent approach of using existing EU sources of battery materials.

Hurdles to permitting is due to a) the plurality of mining codes in Europe bringing different levels of ambition and lack of coherence across Member States. This leads to, in some cases, not having any safeguards in relation to social or environmental protection; b) lengthy permitting processes when multiple permits are required for both renewable energy production and sustainable mineral extraction projects; c) lack of expert capacity to ensure the efficient, robust and timely evaluation of Environmental Impact Assessments and Area Assessments.

Limited amounts of sustainably sourced materials, notably due to limited geological mapping of available resources. Barriers also exist to the reuse and repurposing of EV parts that could extend the lifecycle of CRMs before recycling.

Critical Raw Materials Act should therefore:

Include a single strategy on raw materials that defines expected needs, challenges, priorities and key lines of action with specific objectives of reducing the need of primary CRMs, with efficient reuse and recycle.

Assess the need of stockpiling mechanisms.

Provide financial, political support (e.g. tax reductions) to economic actors meeting the highest existing environmental and social standards. For EU-sourced material, the initiative would then work in relation with the package of environmental policies that control impacts from its domestic mining and refining operations and the high EU social standards.

Incentivise keeping valuable battery material in Europe, available for domestic recyclers, justifying their investments in EU today and incentivise the recycling of production scrap and blackmass/BAMM in EU.

Ensure the sustainability of CRMs by addressing adverse environmental and social impacts of their production or recycling. For imports, supply should come from responsible sources with robust certification, due diligence rules setting legal requirements for suppliers to control risk across their supply chains.

Support geological surveys to determine accessibility of domestic resources, including waste.

Mandate specific marking for any product containing CRMs to facilitate their recovery and recycling.

Streamline robust permitting processes without undermining existing environmental laws and in compliance of ESG criteria.

Support permitting authorities with additional expert capacities.

Digitalize permitting processes to ensure transparency and full engagement from project developers to local communities.

Support financially the development of recycling capacities as all recycling activities are not financially viable today due to the low cost of some primary resources. Support for the development of recycling capacities is indeed crucial to the circularity and sustainability aspect of CRM sourcing.

 Ensure consistency across different pieces of legislation – notably the proposed lithium salts classification – and make sense of the needs of the CRM demand sector.

Give the ERMAlliance the overall view of EU levers and make it a driving force behind the implementation of the strategy.


[Video] The Importance of the AFIR with Koen Noyens (EVBOX)

AFI Regulation
Explained by our member EVBOX

When it comes to charging infrastructure for electric vehicles, the Alternative Fuel Infrastructure Regulation or AFIR is one of the most important EU policy files being discussed today. It defines the legislative framework for public charging for the next decade and is instrumental to realising the Green Deal.

The AFIR is indeed vital for realising a dense, accessible and user-friendly charging network across Europe.

The Platform for electromobility is a strong advocate for creating a uniform EV charging market through binding targets set at Member State level. We believe that through a harmonized Regulation, we can avoid the risk of creating a two speed Europe regarding the EV charging rollout.

The Platform supports both ambitious fleet-based targets as well as distance-based targets across the European highways network.

We need to get going now. We call on the European Parliament and the Council to agree on an AFIR fit for the Green Deal. There is no time to lose to reach our climate targets! You can find more details on our recommendations on Commission’s proposal under the video.