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Utah, 3 other states agree on hydrogen hub; seek portion of $8B in federal funds

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Atlas Disposal Makes Investment of Over $5 million in Cleaner Air Technologies

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UCC Joins Nationwide Call for Investment in Clean Fuels and Vehicles at Energy Independence Summit 2022

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Rural Opportunities to Use Transportation for Economic Success (ROUTES)

Read full brief below

Last updated: Thursday, February 11, 2021


 

Originally posted by USDOT Federal Highway Administration

Rural Opportunities to Use Transportation for Economic Success (ROUTES) is an initiative to address disparities in rural transportation infrastructure by developing user-friendly tools and information, aggregating DOT resources, and providing technical assistance. The ROUTES Initiative aims to ensure rural transportation infrastructure’s unique challenges are considered in order to meet priority transportation goals of safety, mobility, and economic competitiveness.
Read our newly released Rural EV Infrastructure Toolkit, which was developed as part of the ROUTES Initiative to help rural communities plan and fund electric vehicle (EV) charging infrastructure.

The ROUTES Initiative is established to…

  • Engage Rural Communities through a series of events to better understand their transportation needs and priorities, and to collect essential data from stakeholders representing different communities, groups, workers, and industries to identify necessary transportation solutions.
  • Harmonize DOT Programs to implement rural policy by re-constituting the ROUTES Council to lead and coordinate Departmental activities to implement the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law and better align new and existing funding, financing, and technical assistance programs with the needs of rural and Tribal communities.
  • Utilize a Whole-of-Government Approach by partnering with other rural-focused federal agencies and regional commissions to expand DOT’s presence in rural America, better promote DOT’s resources to their customers, and capitalize on synergies between federal funding programs.

The Rural Transportation Network is Critical for Our Economy

  • Rural transportation networks are critically important for domestic production and export of agriculture, mining, and energy commodities, as well as the quality of life for all Americans.
  • Two-thirds of rail freight originates in rural areas, and nearly half of all truck vehicle-miles-traveled (VMT) occur on rural roads.  These industries require heavy trucks that create significantly more wear-and-tear on roadways.
  • Ninety percent of posted (limited weight) bridges are in rural areas and heavy trucks cannot cross posted bridges – to find a safe bridge, heavy trucks hauling in rural areas must traverse three-times the distance as in metro areas.
Rural roads account for a significant proportion of total lane miles in the United States, and they play a significant role in our nation’s transportation system, safely moving people and goods to their destinations. However, rural areas face several transportation challenges relating to safety, usage, and infrastructure condition.

Graphic listing rural transportation statistics. 19% of Americans live in rural areas but 68% of our nation's total lane miles are in rural areas. Urban areas: 1,052 miles per 100,000 residents. Rural areas: 9,818 lane miles per 100,000 residents.

Sources: U.S. Department of Transportation, Federal Highway Administration, Office of Highway Information Management, Highway Statistics, table HM-60, available at http://www.fhwa.dot.gov/policyinformation/statistics.cfm; United States Census Bureau, American Community Survey (ACS), 5-Year Estimates, 2018.

While only 19% of the U.S. population lives in rural areas, 45% of all roadway fatalities and 34% of all public highway-rail grade crossing fatalities occur on rural roads, and the fatality rate on rural roads is 2 times higher than on urban roads.

Fatality Rate Per 100 Million Vehicle-Miles Traveled is 2 times greater in rural areas. Rural=1.68 Urban= 0.86. 45% of highway fatalities occur on rural roads. Rural= 16,411 Urban= 19,498. 34% of fatalities at public highway-rail grade crossings occur in rural areas. 80% of railroad crossings without active warning devices are found in rural areas.

Sources: U.S. Department of Transportation, Federal Highway Administration, Annual Vehicle Distance Traveled in Miles and Related Data, 2017-2018; National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, Fatality Analysis Reporting System, 2018.

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Over $5M for Utah to Support in Building EV Charging Network

Utah is slated to receive over $5 Million in 2022 to support with the build out of EV charging stations along designated Alternative Fuel Corridors, aligning with the administrations larger National EV Charging Network goals.

 

Read full brief below


 

Originally posted by USDOT Federal Highway Administration

President Biden, USDOT and USDOE Announce $5 Billion over Five Years for National EV Charging Network, Made Possible by Bipartisan Infrastructure Law

Thursday, February 10, 2022

Joint Energy and Transportation Office and DriveElectric.gov Available to Assist States with Electric Vehicle Infrastructure Deployment Plans

FHWA 05-22
Contact: FHWA.PressOffice@dot.gov
Tel: (202) 366-0660

WASHINGTON, D.C. – The U.S. Departments of Transportation and Energy today announced nearly $5 billion that will be made available under the new National Electric Vehicle Infrastructure (NEVI) Formula Program established by President Biden’s Bipartisan Infrastructure Law, to build out a national electric vehicle charging network, an important step towards making electric vehicle (EV) charging accessible to all Americans.

The program will provide nearly $5 billion over five years to help states create a network of EV charging stations along designated Alternative Fuel Corridors, particularly along the Interstate Highway System. The total amount available to states in Fiscal Year 2022 under the NEVI Formula Program is $615 million. States must submit an EV Infrastructure Deployment Plan before they can access these funds. A second, competitive grant program designed to further increase EV charging access in locations throughout the country, including in rural and underserved communities, will be announced later this year.

“A century ago, America ushered in the modern automotive era; now America must lead the electric vehicle revolution,” said U.S. Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg. “The President’s Bipartisan Infrastructure Law will help us win the EV race by working with states, labor, and the private sector to deploy a historic nationwide charging network that will make EV charging accessible for more Americans.”

“We are modernizing America’s national highway system for drivers in cities large and small, towns and rural communities, to take advantage of the benefits of driving electric,” said U.S. Secretary of Energy Jennifer M. Granholm. “The Bipartisan Infrastructure Law is helping states to make electric vehicle charging more accessible by building the necessary infrastructure for drivers across America to save money and go the distance, from coast-to-coast.”

Today’s news follows President Biden’s announcement earlier this week on EV manufacturing, and the White House Fact Sheet on actions taken to date to prepare for this historic EV investment.

To access these new Bipartisan Infrastructure Law funds – and to help ensure a convenient, reliable, affordable, and equitable charging experience for all users – each state is required to submit an EV Infrastructure Deployment Plan to the new Joint Office of Energy and Transportation that describes how the state intends to use its share of NEVI Formula Program funds consistent with Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) guidance.

These plans are expected to build on Alternative Fuel Corridors that nearly every state has designated over the past six years of this program. These corridors will be the spine of the new national EV charging network. The Joint Office will play a key role in the implementation of the NEVI Formula Program by providing direct technical assistance and support to help states develop their plans before they are reviewed and approved by the Federal Highway Administration, which administers the funding.

“Americans need to know that they can purchase an electric vehicle and find convenient charging stations when they are using Interstates and other major highways,” Deputy Federal Highway Administrator Stephanie Pollack said. “The new EV formula program will provide states with the resources they need to provide their residents with reliable access to an EV charging station as they travel.”

The new Joint Office of Energy and Transportation also launched a new website this week at DriveElectric.gov. There, officials can find links to technical assistance, data and tools for states, and careers. To join the Joint Office and support a future where everyone can ride and drive electric, individuals are encouraged to apply to be an EV charging fellow.

As part of today’s announcement, FHWA released the NEVI Formula Program funding to states that will be available following approval of state plans for Fiscal Year 2022 in addition to the Program Guidance and a Request for Nominations for states to expand their existing Alternative Fuel Corridors. Here is state-by-state NEVI funding for Fiscal Years 2022-2026.

FY 2022 Funding*

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US DOT Issues Guidance for State DOTS to Implement the National EV Formula Program

Originally posted via Joint Office of Energy and Transportation 

NEWS ALERT: US DOT ISSUES GUIDANCE FOR STATE DOTS TO IMPLEMENT THE NATIONAL EV FORMULA PROGRAM

DOT Issues Guidance for States

Feb. 10, 2022

The U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT) released guidance for state departments of transportation related to implementation of the National Electric Vehicle Infrastructure (NEVI) Formula Program. The NEVI Formula Program will provide dedicated funding to states to strategically deploy EV charging infrastructure and establish an interconnected network to facilitate data collection, access, and reliability.

 

DOT also published the Request for Nominations for the 6th round of alternative fuel corridor designations.

 

View the complete announcement here. 

 


 

Memorandum of Understanding Creates Joint Office

Dec. 14, 2021

U.S. Secretary of Energy Jennifer M. Granholm and U.S. Secretary of Transportation Pete Buttigieg signed a memorandum of understanding to create the Joint Office of Energy and Transportation to support the deployment of $7.5 billion from President Biden’s Bipartisan Infrastructure Law to build out a national electric vehicle charging network that can build public confidence, with a focus on filling gaps in rural, disadvantaged, and hard-to-reach locations.

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Charging Forward: A Toolkit for Planning and Funding Rural Electric Mobility Infrastructure

Originally published through U.S. Department of Transportation

President Biden, U.S. Department of Transportation Releases Toolkit to Help Rural Communities Build Out Electric Vehicle Charging Infrastructure

Wednesday, February 2, 2022

Bipartisan Infrastructure Law to Provide $7.5 Billion for EV Charging Network Across America 

WASHINGTON – The U.S. Department of Transportation today released a new, free resource to help rural communities across the country take full advantage of federal funding for electric vehicle (EV) charging stations. The guide, titled Charging Forward: A Toolkit for Planning and Funding Rural Electric Mobility Infrastructure, can help connect community members, towns, businesses, planning agencies, and others with partners needed for these projects. President Biden’s Bipartisan Infrastructure Law includes a total of $7.5 billion to build out a nationwide network of 500,000 electric vehicle chargers.

The toolkit contains best practices for planning EV charging networks and tips to navigate federal funding and financing to help make these projects a reality. DOT will also be holding workshops with rural communities to utilize the toolkit most effectively.

This toolkit is being released in anticipation of the distribution of $7 billion in funds to accelerate the deployment of a national electric vehicle charging network from the President’s Bipartisan Infrastructure Law. Of these funds, $4.75 billion will be distributed by formula to states, and an additional $2.5 billion will be distributed through a competitive grant program that will support innovative approaches and ensure that charger deployment meets Administration priorities such as supporting rural charging, improving local air quality and increasing EV charging access in disadvantaged communities. Together, this is the largest-ever U.S. investment in EV charging and will be a transformative down payment on the transition to a zero-emission future.

“Drivers in rural areas often have the longest commutes and spend the most money on gas, which means big benefits from having access to electric cars and pickup trucks if they are affordable and easy to charge where they live and drive,” said Secretary Pete Buttigieg. “The investments in the President’s Bipartisan Infrastructure Law for a national EV charging network are an important step toward ensuring that EVs aren’t a luxury item and that everyone in America can benefit from clean transportation.”

The Department of Transportation, along with the Department of Energy and the White House are conducting outreach and providing resources including this new toolkit to help ensure all Americans, including those in rural, disadvantaged, and hard-to-reach locations, benefit from EV technology.

This toolkit follows other examples of recent progress towards expansion of EV infrastructure including a memorandum of understanding signed by Secretary Buttigieg and U.S. Secretary of Energy Jennifer M. Granholm, which sets the stage for the two agencies to collaborate on implementation of the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law’s electric vehicle provisions.

Further, today’s announcement follows progress on the Biden-Harris Administration delivering the benefits of the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law to rural communities. Last week, DOT announced more than $1.2 billion for the Appalachian Development Highway System. Yesterday, the Department of Interior announced $1.15 billion to help 26 states cap and remediate orphan oil and gas wells that will help many rural areas.  Last month, DOT also announced a historic investment in bridges, including off system bridges that greatly benefit rural communities

The toolkit was developed as part of the Rural Opportunities to Use Transportation for Economic Success (ROUTES) Initiative at USDOT, which coordinates rural infrastructure policy at the Department. The ROUTES Initiative was first created in 2019 and codified in the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law.  ROUTES provides technical assistance and easy-to-access resources for rural transportation stakeholders, including this toolkit. More information on the ROUTES Initiative can be found at www.transportation.gov/rural.

The Department will also host a webinar to present the toolkit in more detail on February 9 at 1:30 PM ET. The webinar is free to attend, register here.

Over the coming weeks and months, USDOT will hold additional workshops with rural communities and stakeholders to obtain feedback on the toolkit and provide information to help rural communities get started with electric vehicle charging projects. An updated toolkit will be available this summer that incorporates feedback from these workshops, expanded information on new programs, and new information on topics such as transit and school bus electrification.

Updates on the revised toolkit and other rural EV resources will be provided at www.transportation.gov/rural/ev.

The toolkit is available here: www.transportation.gov/rural/ev/toolkit

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Sandy City Launches Sustainable Sandy Initiative; Unveils New EV Chargers

Learn more about the rollout of EV chargers throughout Sandy City!

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The Case for Electric School Buses

What first comes to mind when you think about school bus transportation? Perhaps it’s the orange or yellow color, the sound of one passing by your home, or the dot moving on the map on your phone as you watch your child’s commute to school. What may not yet come to mind, however, is a quiet, emissions-free electric school bus.

Since school buses transport millions of students to and from school every day throughout the school year, they may be the most critical vehicles on the road. What if there was a way to make their commute safer, healthier, and more efficient? There may be, and per the benefits, we explore below, the answer may point to electric school buses.

Improved Health and Safety

  • Cleaner Air for Passengers

According to an article by Environmental Defense, exposure to various pollutants from inside a diesel school bus is five to six times greater than ambient levels and three times higher than someone walking to school. The exposure to pollutants inside the bus, called self-pollution, occurs because the bus’s tailpipe emissions are reentering into the cabin. Because there are no tailpipe emissions on electric vehicles, an electric bus’s air quality inside (and outside) is significantly improved.

  • Reduced Health Risk

Electric school buses may reduce asthma symptoms and other respiratory issues since they do not emit exhaust. However, air pollutants such as diesel exhaust can trigger or worsen asthma attacks. Another scary condition to which diesel exhaust is a contributor is cancer. Diesel exhaust is internationally recognized as a carcinogen and recognized by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency as a substance that likely causes cancer.

  • More Reliable Transportation

Electric vehicles have fewer moving parts; therefore, there are fewer parts to deteriorate or break. This can mean that electric buses are more reliable, especially for longer bus routes and traffic considerations.

  • Quieter Commute

Electric vehicles are much quieter than gas or diesel-powered vehicles, making the inside of buses less noisy as well. Driving a quieter school bus could mean that bus drivers can better hear and communicate with students and better hear their surroundings (such as a siren).
Environmental Benefits

  • Cleaner Air

Exchanging one diesel school bus with an electric school bus can lower greenhouse gas emissions by over 50,000 pounds per year. The air quality of an area dramatically improves with the lack of diesel fuel exhaust emissions. Cleaner air benefits other commuters, surrounding plants and wildlife, and the community.

  • Quieter Roadways

Since electric vehicles don’t make much noise, they don’t contribute to the nuisance of “noise pollution.” Noise pollution is any environmental noise that is unwanted and disturbing. Traffic and regular vehicles fall into this category.

  • Continuously Lessening the Environmental Impact

While pollution is created in producing electric vehicles, the amount varies depending on the process, company, location, and other factors. Manufacturers are continuously finding new ways to produce and operate electric vehicles more cleanly and efficiently. This also includes the electric grids from which the batteries are charged.

Lower Operation Cost

  • Better “Gas” Mileage

Electric school buses require less energy and cost to operate. If you compare an electric school bus’s “gas mileage” to that of a diesel school bus, electric gets the equivalent of 17 miles per gallon, while the diesel gets approximately 6 miles per gallon. Additionally, electricity is less expensive than diesel fuel and has more predictable prices.

  • Less Maintenance Cost

Gas and diesel-powered vehicles require frequent maintenance such as oil changes and tune-ups and component replacements such as the water pump and fuel pump. However, since electric vehicles don’t need much maintenance, the maintenance cost savings of an electric school bus versus a diesel school bus is nearly 60%. The operation cost savings can offset the initial investment of an electric school bus, which is more than that of a diesel school bus.

  • Healthcare Savings

By reducing air pollution, moving to electric vehicles is expected to create significant savings in overall healthcare.

Other Benefits and FAQ’s

How long will the electric batteries in electric buses last?

The electric batteries are expected to last for the life of the bus or about 12-15 years.

What happens with the battery after it can no longer be used?

Most electric school buses will use a lithium-ion battery which can be recycled after use.

Will an electric school bus be able to complete a bus route before needing to charge again?

A typical school bus route one-way is 30-40 miles. The electric school buses can travel between 100-135 miles between charges, giving more than enough energy to complete a daily route.

How long does it take to charge the bus’s battery fully?

It depends on the bus and the size of the charging station, though it typically takes about 6-8 hours. This timeframe makes overnight charging convenient for schools.

What about all the other diesel and gas cars on the road?

While we can’t control the types of transportation citizens use, communities can choose the type of transportation their schools operate.

Electric school buses are quickly becoming a priority for cities and government officials, and with the long list of advantages, they may become a priority for parents as well. As electric vehicles become more common, the benefits of electric school buses on the health of children and communities, safety, lower long-term costs for schools are becoming more apparent.