A.G. Schneiderman Announces First-Of-Its-Kind Partnership With Four NYC Non-Profits To Demonstrate Benefits Of All-Electric Trucks

News from Attorney General Eric T. Schneiderman

September 14, 2017

Attorney General’s Press Office / 212-416-8060
Twitter: @AGSchneiderman


Project "E3” (E-Cubed) Will Equip Wildlife Conservation Society, NY Botanical Garden, Habitat For Humanity NYC, & Big Reuse With Electric Delivery Trucks For Two Years

E3 Funded Through Attorney General’s $9.5 Million Clean Air Settlement With American Electric Power 

In NYC, Trucks Produce Over 70% Of Traffic-Related Soot Pollution – Pollution That Causes 320 Premature Deaths And 870 Emergency Room Visits And Hospitalizations In The City Every Single Year

NEW YORK –Attorney General Eric T. Schneiderman, along with four prominent New York City-based non-profits, today announced a first-of-it-kind partnership, coined "E3” (E-Cubed), to highlight the economic, efficiency and environmental benefits that all-electric delivery trucks could have for New Yorkers. The innovative project will give the Wildlife Conservation Society, New York Botanical Garden, Habitat for Humanity New York City, and Big Reuse the opportunity to lease battery-powered electric delivery trucks for two years, while documenting the benefits of the trucks’ use in New York City. The initiative furthers the Attorney General’s commitment to protecting New Yorkers from dangerous pollution and its public health impacts, as the project is funded by a $9.5 million settlement the Attorney General’s Office reached with American Electric Power, the largest U.S. power company, over the company’s violations of the federal Clean Air Act. 

"New Yorkers deserve access to clean, safe and healthy environments,” said Attorney General Schneiderman. “Electric trucks offer an alternative to the gas and diesel powered delivery trucks that pump noise, greenhouse gases, and other pollution into our neighborhoods – and have a dire impact on our public health and environment. This innovative partnership will showcase how zero-emission vehicles can offer a cleaner, greener, healthier, and more affordable solution for New Yorkers.” 

The participating non-profit organizations, chosen through a competitive application process, will each receive funding from the Attorney General to lease two all-electric Mitsubishi Fuso “eCanter” medium-duty delivery trucks to support core operations and services for two years.  

During this period, the Attorney General and M.J. Bradley & Associates—a firm with an established practice in the implementation of advanced vehicle technologies—will study the performance of the electric trucks deployed in the project, and document their utility and benefits in New York City. The Attorney General’s Office will then prepare a report on the study’s findings with the goal of addressing common concerns of private truck fleet operators about adopting electric trucks by validating the reliability and business case for these vehicles.

John Calvelli, Executive Vice President for Public Affairs of the Wildlife Conservation Society, said, “As a global conservation organization working in 60 countries and all the world’s oceans, as well as managing the world’s largest network of urban zoos, we have seen firsthand the impacts of climate change and other air pollution on wildlife and wild places. Attorney General Schneiderman has shown real leadership in tackling this issue head on, and we are grateful and honored to be part of the solution by participating in this project to use electric trucks at our zoos in New York City.”

Gregory Long, Chief Executive Officer and The William C. Steere Sr. President of The New York Botanical Garden, said, “We are very grateful to Attorney General Schneiderman for this opportunity to add two all-electric trucks to our fleet of vehicles. As an institution, we are committed to being on the cutting edge of energy efficiency and to reducing our carbon emissions to the greatest possible extent. We are extremely proud to have been chosen by the Attorney General to demonstrate these electric trucks, and we intend to use them both at the Botanical Garden and on the streets of New York City so people will see the important role that these innovative vehicles can play in protecting our environment.”

Karen Haycox, CEO of Habitat for Humanity New York City, said, “Habitat NYC is grateful to Attorney General Schneiderman for including our organization in this exciting, new, and environmentally-conscious project. These new electric trucks will provide a key role in growing the success of Habitat NYC's ReStore – which provides New Yorkers with high-quality household items at a reduced rate – and supporting our work in building and revitalizing homes for ownership by families and individuals in need. We are further thrilled to play a role in helping the Attorney General demonstrate that all-electric trucks make good environmental, public health, and business sense for New York City."

Justin Green, Executive Director of Big Reuse, said, "Big Reuse is thrilled and proud to be part of Attorney General Schneiderman's electric truck demonstration project. Electric trucks represent the future of trucking. As an environmental organization, Big Reuse has been waiting for an all-electric truck to take the place of polluting diesel trucks we must now use. By participating in this project, we can continue to do our environmental work in reuse and composting while demonstrating the many benefits that zero emission, electric trucks offer to the health and happiness of our communities."

“Mitsubishi Fuso is delighted to join with the Attorney General’s office in offering a real-world solution to helping reduce emissions and noise pollution. Electric trucks, like our new eCanter, provide a cleaner, greener, and quieter alternative for fleet operators in New York City,” said Marc Llistosella, Head of Daimler Trucks Asia.

Because they deliver more than 91 percent of all goods in New York City, trucks have a substantial impact on the city’s air quality. According to the American Lung Association, New York City is one of the worst cities in the nation for soot pollution, which contributes to heart disease, respiratory illness, and death. This is underscored by the fact that soot pollution from traffic in the New York City has been found to cause 320 premature deaths and 870 emergency room visits and hospitalizations annually, according to the New York City Health Department. Trucks are responsible for over 70 percent of traffic-related soot – more than twice as much to this soot pollution as passenger cars and ten times than buses. Notably, the impacts of soot pollution are most acutely felt by the city’s low-income communities, with the poorest neighborhoods experiencing 1.7 times higher soot exposures and 9.3 times the rate of emergency department visits for asthma due to emissions from trucks and buses.  

Experts argue that delivery trucks operating in urban centers are ideally suited for "electrification." This is because urban delivery trucks typically work out of a central depot, and travel relatively short, well-defined routes. In this way, two major obstacles to all-electric vehicles – limits on vehicle range and the availability of charging stations – are largely irrelevant to operating electric delivery trucks in cities.  In addition, electric trucks are less polluting, more fuel efficient, and cost less to maintain than conventional gas and diesel-fueled trucks.  

Today’s announcement follows a number of other steps Attorney General Schneiderman has taken to protect New Yorkers’ air and health, including filing suit against the Environmental Protection Agency for its illegal delay of smog regulations; within days, the EPA reversed course.

Jeff Seyler, Executive Vice President, American Lung Association - Northeast Region, said, “We expect the increased use of cleaner vehicles like electric trucks to improve air quality, including reducing emissions that worsen asthma and cause lung cancer. This is especially important for the millions of New Yorkers who live and work near busy roadways where vehicle pollution directly threatens their health. We applaud the effort announced by Attorney General Schneiderman today because it will help New Yorkers breathe easier.”

James T.B. Tripp, Senior Counsel with the Environmental Defense Fund, said, “With no tailpipe emissions, electric delivery trucks will lower pollution – especially in neighborhoods with heavy traffic – and result in a cleaner New York City. Attorney General Schneiderman’s demonstration project will help New Yorkers lead healthier lives and accelerate the transition to a clean energy future.”

Luke Tonachel, Director of the Natural Resources Defense Council’s Clean Vehicles and Fuels Project, said, “These trucks will help New Yorkers across the city breathe easier. The more trucks we replace with electric vehicles, the less health-harming, climate-changing air pollution in our neighborhoods.  Attorney General Schneiderman is helping to jumpstart a transition to cleaner trucks in New York and setting an example that cities around the US and world can follow.”

This matter is being handled by Policy Advisor Peter C. Washburn of the Attorney General's Environmental Protection Bureau, under the supervision of Environmental Protection Bureau Chief Lemuel M. Srolovic and Executive Deputy Attorney General for Social Justice Alvin Bragg.