BYDTruck.jpgSAN FRANCISCO, California, April 14, 2017 (ENS) - A pilot project to test electrifying Goodwill’s nationwide truck fleet will begin this month in the San Francisco Bay Area.


Eleven BYD electric delivery trucks will be deployed to serve Goodwill locations in the counties of San Mateo, San Francisco and Marin.


Goodwill Industries provides employment, job training and other community-based programs for people with disabilities, people who lack education or job experience, and others facing challenges to finding employment.


To pay for its programs, Goodwill sells donated goods and other household items in more than 3,000 thrift stores across the United States and on the auction site


The Bay Area Air Quality Management District and its partners: the California Air Resources Board, San Francisco Goodwill, the Center for Transportation and the Environment, and the Chinese automaker BYD Corp., announced the test project last Friday.


"Collecting donated goods to create local jobs and take pressure off our landfills is integral to Goodwill’s mission," said William Rogers, CEO and president of Goodwill Industries of San Francisco, San Mateo and Marin. “This zero-emission fleet of 11 electric trucks will reduce local emissions, improve air quality and demonstrate Goodwill’s commitment to improving the communities we serve."


Goals for the pilot project include providing a national model to electrify Goodwill’s entire truck fleet, increasing market adoption for electric trucks generally, and reducing greenhouse gases and air pollution locally.


“Diesel trucks are the largest source of unhealthy air pollution in the Bay Area," said Jack Broadbent, executive officer of the Bay Area Air Quality Management District, the regional agency responsible for protecting air quality in the nine-county Bay Area.


“Electric trucks reduce unhealthy diesel exhaust from our streets and neighborhoods providing the region with air quality benefits and greenhouse gas reductions," Broadbent said.


This $4.4 million project is funded through the State of California’s climate change-fighting cap-and-trade program, and includes matching funds from the Air District and an in-kind match from San Francisco Goodwill.


The project is part of California Climate Investments, a statewide program that puts billions of cap-and-trade dollars to work reducing greenhouse gas emissions.


“The future will be electric, but for Goodwill and the Bay Area it's here today," said California Air Resources Board Chair Mary Nichols.


“These electric 100 percent zero-emission trucks are built in California, and will demonstrate on a daily basis how smart investments of cap-and-trade proceeds are improving air quality – and the quality of life – throughout the state, including right here in Bay Area communities most affected by air pollution," Nichols said.


Electric delivery trucks offer numerous environmental and operational benefits over conventional diesel vehicles. The cost to charge an electric vehicle is a fraction of the cost of filling up with diesel fuel.


Maintenance is 50 percent less. An electric truck also has no tailpipe emissions, which provides immediate health benefits both for residents where the trucks operate, and for the drivers who use them on a daily basis, Nichols pointed out.


“This deployment with Goodwill for BYD state of the art battery electric trucks will show the skeptics that zero emission technology is reliable and ready for wide scale use in medium and heavy-duty trucking applications," said Stella Li, president of BYD Motors.


The Goodwill electric delivery truck project is part of 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 percent of these investments are made in disadvantaged and low-income communities.


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PHOTO: BYD electric truck, made in California (Photo courtesy BYD)


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