The New Jersey Board of Public Utilities (NJBPU) has opened the application window for its medium- and heavy-duty electric vehicle (MHD EV) charging program, funded through the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative (RGGI).
The $16.1 million program will complement the New Jersey Economic Development Authority’s (NJEDA) ongoing transportation electrification efforts by working with its NJ Zero-Emission Incentive Program (NJZIP), which is also a RGGI-funded MHDV program that works to address barriers to EV acquisition especially for small, local businesses located in overburdened communities. The board’s program, which will provide incentives for chargers and associated make-ready costs, would focus on funding two charging models: community charging and private fleet charging. This dual focus will help to further support EV adoption in these areas.
Under the 2020-2022 Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative (RGGI) Strategic Funding Plan’s “Catalyze Clean, Equitable Transportation” initiative, NJBPU is committed to reducing emissions from transportation sources in communities disproportionately impacted by the effects of environmental degradation and climate change. This announcement is part of this initiative.
“We’ve all had the experience of driving behind a bus or truck and smelling the thick metallic diesel exhaust that emerges in its wake,” says NJBPU President Joseph L. Fiordaliso. “Medium and heavy-duty trucks and buses make up 25 percent of New Jersey’s transportation sector emissions – not to mention they are also a major and disproportionate contributor to localized air pollution – even though they are only about 4 percent of the vehicles on the road. Through smart and strategic programs and investments, like those featured in this charging program, we can achieve cleaner air in overburdened communities and cost savings for business owners. NJBPU thanks our sister agencies for their partnership in making this program a reality for New Jerseyans.”
Under the NJBPU program, the funded chargers must be Direct Current Fast Chargers (DCFCs) with a capacity of 150 kWh or greater. Selected project locations will be allowed up to six chargers per site. Final selection of grantees and distribution of grant funds will also be dependent on grantees receiving project approval from their electric distribution company (EDC). Applicants may apply to both the community charging track and the private fleet track, but if the applicant is selected for both tracks, each location will still only be eligible for funding for up to a total of six chargers from this program.
“Increasing the number of zero-emission vehicles on the roads is a key part of New Jersey’s response to climate change and improving health outcomes in our overburdened communities, all while supporting small businesses looking to go green and reduce their carbon footprint,” states NJEDA CEO Tim Sullivan. “Through innovative programs like the Medium and Heavy-Duty Electric Vehicle Charging Program and NJ ZIP, we will continue to advance Governor Murphy’s whole-of-government approach to building a green economy grounded in creating good jobs and strong, healthy communities.”
Through the combined NJBPU and NJEDA programs, applicants will have access to critical funding for both the purchase of MHD EVs and the charging infrastructure they require.
“The Department of Environmental Protection applauds this pilot grant program, which will help us better understand the electric-charging needs of truck owners,” says Commissioner of Environmental Protection Shawn M. LaTourette. “Providing incentives and supporting fleets as they replace their diesel trucks with electric vehicles will ensure steady progress towards our climate change mitigation goals.”
New Jersey already offers the Charge-Up NJ incentive program for the purchase of electric vehicles, the Clean Fleet program for the purchase of electric vehicles and chargers for government entities, the Multi-Unit Dwelling (MUD) program to encourage owners and operators of MUDs to provide EV chargers to residents, and the EV Tourism program which provides incentives for the location of chargers at tourism locations around New Jersey. Additionally, Board Staff recently issued a revised straw proposal for a comprehensive MHD charging ecosystem program.
Since 2019, the Murphy Administration has awarded nearly $240 million in grants to reduce New Jersey’s reliance on fossil fuels in the transportation sector. This money has paid for electrification of vehicles – including trucks, buses, and airport and port vehicles and equipment – and for the expansion of the state’s network of charging stations. These grants have also provided access to clean transportation in overburdened communities.
Image: “Electric vehicle charging station” by quinn.anya is licensed under CC BY-SA 2.0