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The US Department of Energy Is Investing $199 Million To Clean Up Transportation Sector

(Credit: Pixabay)

The U.S. government’s Department of Energy announced Tuesday that it will be funding sustainable vehicle initiatives to the tune of $199 million. The money will be divided among 25 projects aimed at developing cleaner trucks, cars, and transportation infrastructure such as electric vehicle charging stations.

More than half of the award will go to trucks under the DOE’s SuperTruck 3 program, whose aim is to improve medium- and heavy-duty truck efficiencies and reduce emissions of freight transportation. The SuperTruck initiative began in 2009 with the goal of improving heavy-duty truck freight efficiency by 50%. SuperTruck 2 sought to double fuel efficiency for 18-wheeler trucks. SuperTruck 3 will split $127 million between five heavy vehicle manufacturers working on fuel efficient and zero emissions technology in the commercial transport sector:

  • PACCAR Inc will receive nearly $33 million to develop Class-8 battery electric and fuel cell vehicles with advanced batteries and a megawatt charging station.
  • Volvo Group North America will receive just over $18 million to develop a 400-mile-range Class-8 battery electric tractor-trailer with advanced aerodynamics, electric braking, EV optimized tires, automation and route planning along with a megawatt charging station.
  • Daimler Trucks North America will receive $25.8 million to develop two Class-8 fuel cell trucks with a 600-mile range and a 25,000-hour durability as well as a hauling capacity and range equivalent to diesel trucks.
  • Ford Motor Company will receive nearly $25 million to develop five hydrogen fuel cell electric Class-6 Super Duty trucks targeting cost, payload, towing, and refueling times comparable to conventional trucks.
  • General Motors will receive $26 million to develop four hydrogen fuel cell and four battery electric Class 4-6 trucks. The automotive manufacturer will also produce clean hydrogen fuel via renewably fueled electrolysis and clean power for fast charging.

The rest of the money is reserved for the Low Greenhouse Gas Vehicle Technologies program, which will invest $71 million in 20 projects working to “reduce emissions for on- and off-road vehicles and accelerate the expansion of EV infrastructure and charging.” A focus point is making EV charging more accessible by installing charging stations in locations that are currently neglected, for instance multi-unit housing and workplaces. Other initiatives include hosting community-led demonstrations that address barriers to EV adoption and lowering costs for direct current fast charging equipment.

Transportation is responsible for 29% of emissions: the most of any sector in the U.S. economy. This effort by the DOE is part of the Biden administration’s push to cut emissions in half by 2030 and achieve a carbon neutral economy by 2050. 

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