Port of Oakland Launches Zero-Emissions Truck Project

electric charging stations
New electric charging stations for battery electric trucks at Port of Oakland. Photo courtesy of the Port of Oakland.

The Port of Oakland and its logistics partners have launched a battery electric truck demonstration project on its path to zero emissions at the Oakland Seaport.

In mid-July, the port debuted 10 new battery electric trucks at Shippers Transport Express (STE), a port-based trucking operation. The Peterbilt trucks cost a total of $5.1 million and are used to haul cargo within the port’s maritime area. Funding for the trucks comes from a ZANZEFF grant (Zero and Near-Zero-Emission Freight Facility) program.

The battery electric truck demonstration project is expected to reduce greenhouse gas emissions. It expands options for another clean, cargo-handling technology at California ports.

The vehicles’ trips will be within the Port of Oakland. The data collected will include emissions reductions measurements. The trucks will also be monitored for how effectively they operate when hauling fully loaded containers.

Currently, 17 battery electric trucks are in operation at the port. Use of the drayage trucks is presently limited to short distances and lighter cargo loads due to range and highway weight limitations.

“Getting these cleaner-running and quieter trucks into service is a major step in testing the feasibility of battery electric trucks moving containers,” Port of Oakland Maritime Director Bryan Brandes said.

The demonstration project is expected to last about three months.

Funding for the project comes from the California Air Resources Board, which invests in new zero- and near-zero emission technology.

Oakland spent $1.7 million to build 10 electric charging stations at STE, plus built a new electrical substation and power line extension to connect to the charging stations. The construction projects, which took about two years to complete, advance the port’s plan for reducing emissions from Port of Oakland sources.

The port’s monetary and construction commitments served as a grant funding match for the electric truck demonstration project. Additionally, the project is listed as a “Near Term Action” in the port’s Seaport Air Quality 2020 & Beyond Plan.

“We’re grateful to the California Air Resources Board for funding electric drayage trucks at the Oakland Seaport,” Port of Oakland Director of Environmental Programs and Planning Richard Sinkoff said. “Demonstration projects help us toward our goal of a zero-emissions seaport.”