The United States Postal Service (USPS) will begin using seven Ford E-450 based all-electric step vans for deliveries in California. Motiv, a provider of all-electric medium duty fleet chassis, recently began deliveries of the initial fleet to the USPS.
As compared to their combustion engine-powered counterparts, Motiv’s all-electric EPIC chassis equipped mail delivery vans are expected to save fuel and maintenance costs resulting in an overall reduction of total cost of ownership.
The pilot program of seven Motiv-powered vans is slated for deployment in California’s Central Valley. The first vehicle now serves routes in Fresno with the balance of the vehicles to be deployed in Fresno and Stockton as part of a year-long program. Most of the immediate project benefits will accrue in the San Joaquin Valley, an economically disadvantaged area with some of the highest pollution burdens in the country, as evidenced by CalEnviroScreen scores within the worst 5% in the state.
The USPS has a long history of testing electric vehicles for city delivery. In fact, the first known test of an electric vehicle for mail collection was in Buffalo, New York on July 2, 1899. Since 2001, the USPS has operated 30 electric two-ton vehicles on the streets of New York City, and these were later joined by a pair of two-ton hybrid electric vehicles in Long Island.
The USPS’ acquisition of the Motiv chassis-powered vans was developed as a partnership by CALSTART and the San Joaquin Clean Transportation Center and funded through a California Air Resources Board (CARB) award to the San Joaquin Air Quality Control. The funds are meant to provide an incentive to Californian fleets to adopt the cleanest emerging technologies and continue to advance California’s Air Quality and Climate goals.
The USPS’ acquisition of the vans was made possible by the California Climate Investments, a statewide program that puts billions of cap-and-trade dollars to work reducing greenhouse gas emissions, strengthening the economy and improving public health and the environment, particularly in disadvantaged communities. The cap-and-trade program also creates a financial incentive for industries to invest in clean technologies and develop innovative ways to reduce pollution.
California Climate Investment projects include affordable housing, renewable energy, public transportation, zero-emission vehicles, environmental restoration, more sustainable agriculture, and recycling. At least 35% of these investments are made in disadvantaged and low-income communities.
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