Drive to Zero Newsletter – July 2023

Our monthly newsletter keeps you informed of the innovative new policies, technologies, tools, and actions accelerating our progress toward zero-emission transport. Zero-emission trucks and buses are delivering a healthier climate and cleaner air, as well as business, operational, and economic benefits—let’s drive to zero faster together!

Dear Drive to Zero™ Pledge Partners and Allies:

At the 14th Clean Energy Ministerial (CEM14) and 8th Mission Innovation (MI-8), tourism, policy, and innovation leader Goa took a powerful step toward sustainable transport by endorsing the Global Memorandum of Understanding on Zero-Emission Medium- and Heavy-Duty Vehicles (Global MOU), co-led by the Government of The Netherlands and CALSTART’s Global Commercial Vehicle Drive to Zero program and campaign (Drive to Zero).

Leading manufacturers at the Zero-Emission Truck High-Level Ambition Group (ZET HLAG) for India industry group launch at CEM14.

Goa is now part of a global community working together to achieve ambitious and attainable targets: 100% zero-emission new medium- and heavy-duty vehicle (ZE-MHDV) sales by 2040, with an interim goal of at least 30% new sales by 2030. Twenty-seven countries are currently signatories to the Global MOU, including the United States, Canada, the United Kingdom, Ukraine, and others. Goa joins roughly 80 subnational governments—including California, Québec, and fellow India state Telangana—as well as private sector innovators in signing formal acknowledgements endorsing the Global MOU.

Drive to Zero is thrilled that Goa has seized the moment to transition and scale ZE-MHDVs, which will deliver economic, climate, air quality, and grid stability benefits to its citizens. Read about other important announcements at CEM14 and Drive to Zero’s presence at these events in our Program Progress and Actions below. We will continue to build global partnerships and help signatories and endorsers work strategically and collaboratively to decarbonize commercial vehicles. Let’s drive forward together toward a safer, more sustainable, and prosperous future!

— Stephanie Kodish, Global Director, CALSTART / Drive to Zero

Program updates

CEM14 Recap: India’s Moment to Accelerate and Transition is Now

It was clear at CEM14 that demand to accelerate the commercial vehicle industry in India is strong. The week kicked off with a public letter from the world’s growing ZE transport community calling for increased collaboration to accelerate global infrastructure for ZE transport at the ZEVWISE coalition’s side event, Zero-Emission Trucks and the Energy Sector: Bridging the Gap and Financing the Transition. Joined by fellow ZEVWISE-coalition panelists, our Global Director Stephanie Kodish made the case for acceleration through cooperation and spoke in support of the climate, energy, clean air, and economic benefits of accelerating ZE infrastructure worldwide.

(Left to right) ZEVWISE speakers: Government of The Netherlands Rosemarie Cramer, IEA Cornelia Schenk, VisionMechX Dr. Rashi Gupta, California Air Resources Board Sydney Vergis, Smart Freight Centre/Milence Sophie Punte, and CALSTART/Drive to Zero Stephanie Kodish.

collaboration with local partners The Energy and Research Institute (TERI) and Shakti, Drive to Zero also organized the Zero-Emission Zone of the CEM Technology Showcase. Over the four days, many delegates and about 4,000 schoolchildren saw and touched the technologies that can power India’s ZE transport future.

Schoolchildren gathering for the Zero-Emission Zone of the CEM Technology Showcase.

On Saturday, the Zero-Emission Truck High-Level Ambition Group (ZET HLAG) for India was launched at a CEM14 event co-led by CALSTART; the India ZEV Research Centre, University of California, Davis; Climate Group; and NITI Aayog. ZET HLAG will bring together top India commercial vehicle and component manufacturers and infrastructure providers to achieve the strong mix of policies, programs, incentives, and partnerships needed to accelerate India’s ZE transport sector.


ZET HLAG members, including CALSTART CEO John Boesel and Global Director Stephanie Kodish, at the industry group launch event.

A top takeaway was the need for government to establish a clear policy signal that will put India on the path toward full decarbonization. With the goal of reaching carbon neutrality by 2070, ZET HLAG organizers and participants agreed ZE transport must be prioritized. Drive to Zero developed this two-page brief ahead of CEM14 to provide a strategic framework and vision for India’s ZE-MHDV market.

Drive to Zero’s Golden Quadrilateral for India

In concert with ZET HLAG, fifteen influential businesses announced that they will collaborate under the Zero Emission Vehicles Emerging Markets Initiative (ZEV-EMI) and Electric Freight Accelerator for Sustainable Transport (E-FAST) platform to help electrify India’s truck market. This national task force, led by NITI Aayog, will strengthen collaboration across diverse stakeholders and work to deploy more than 7,700 trucks by 2030.

ZETI Survey—We Want to Hear From You!

This brief survey aims to gather information about your experience with our Zero-Emission Technology Inventory (ZETI) and/or ZETI Data Explorer, the challenges you face, and your expectations for future developments. It will take only a few minutes and will enable us to continue to improve our resources. Responses are appreciated by 5 p.m. PT August 31. We deeply appreciate your time and feedback!

News Updates

With last month being the world’s hottest June on record, decarbonizing transport must occur both in India and across the globe to ensure a viable future for all living communities—full stop. Check out the spotlighted stories below that will help enable achievement of 30% new ZE-MHDV sales by 2030 and 100% by 2040 globally, and be sure to scroll further for more, including California’s new deal to phase out polluting big rigs, an innovative on-road inductive charging system for a 50-tonne electric truck in Sweden, and the rollout of the UK’s largest electric refuse collection fleet.

New EU Regulation to Bring Alternative Fuels Infrastructure

Major news from Europe: The European Council has adopted the alternative fuels infrastructure regulation (AFIR), which will deploy recharging and refueling stations along the EU’s main transport corridors (TEN-T) beginning in 2025. AFIR will help ensure complete recharging coverage for cars, vans, and heavy-duty vehicles by 2030, among other targets. This new law will aid in more rapid deployment of ZE-MHDVs and accelerate transport decarbonization in Europe.

Sustainable Transport in Africa Publication

Drive to Zero recommends Leapfrogging to Sustainable Transport in Africa, which synthesizes data-backed perspectives to provide 12 insights on both present and future transport in Africa. Trucks in Africa transport 80-90% of the continent’s goods, and freight transport will double by 2030 relative to 2019 levels. Efforts must be made to ensure this growth is both zero-emission and sustainable.

Movement on Mediterranean Corridor for Heavy-Duty Charging

Iberdrola and the Business Association for the Development and Promotion of Electric Mobility (AEDIVE) are joining forces to electrify road freight transport. More than 160 charging points with megawatt charging system equipment will be installed across all of Iberdrola’s 15 logistics bases in Spain and be available for public use. This alliance is in line with the EU’s goal for all member countries to reduce their greenhouse gas emissions by at least 55% by 2030.

Please share new information, potential partners, and innovative practices to achieve our Drive to Zero goals at Follow us on Twitter @TeamDrivetoZero. Please feel free to share this newsletter with others.

– Emily Carnell, Technical Writer, CALSTART

News Digest

Events / Reports

 Fleet Deployments

Manufacturers and Models: Trucks and Buses

Manufacturers and Models: Port Equipment and Off-Road

Government Policies

Financial Incentives

Fuels & Infrastructure

Batteries & Technology