On Thursday, at the second-annual Climate Mayors Summit in Honolulu, 127 cities and 15 counties from across 38 states joined the Climate Mayors Electric Vehicle Purchasing Collaborative, committing to purchase more than 2,100 total electric vehicles (EVs) by the end of 2020.
Launched in September 2018, the collaborative is a partnership between Climate Mayors, the Electrification Coalition and Sourcewell, a national transit fleet transition program.
The collaborative has announced plans to place a competitive bid on electric school buses by the end of this year, which will enable all electric school bus manufacturers to offer any public school system in the country access to equal, competitive prices, the partners say. Sourcewell will be releasing a national solicitation for electric school buses by the end of the year.
“The clean transportation revolution is not a distant vision for the far-off future; it’s a reality hitting the streets of Los Angeles and cities around the world,” says Eric Garcetti, mayor of Los Angeles and founder and co-chair of Climate Mayors. “By pooling our purchasing power, Climate Mayors are sending a powerful message to the global car market: If you build electric vehicles, we will buy them.”
In 2018, Garcetti announced the launch of the collaborative – an online portal that provides cities with a single, equal price for EVs and charging infrastructure by aggregating the demand from Climate Mayors cities and other public agencies, along with policy and planning guidance. The number of cities has more than quintupled since that announcement.
“The electrification of Honolulu’s city and bus fleets will go a long way in making our island more sustainable and resilient in the face of the current climate crisis,” says Honolulu’s mayor, Kirk Caldwell. “However, it will also improve the natural environment for our residents and visitors by eliminating smoky exhaust fumes and noise pollution from our communities.”
“Emissions from vehicles are a major source of pollutants in local communities around the nation,” notes Christopher Taylor, mayor of Ann Arbor, Mich. “In fact, in Ann Arbor, we anticipate emissions from the transportation sector soon growing to be our largest source of emissions. Given this, it is imperative that local communities do all they can to support and expand active transportation, alternative transportation and the clean transportation revolution.”
With support from Bloomberg Philanthropies, the collaborative is working with the American Cities Climate Challenge, a group of 25 U.S. cities pursuing goals to cut emissions and fight climate change. American Cities Climate Challenge cities represent about 700 vehicles of the commitment.