Volvo Construction Equipment (CE) has been awarded a US$2 million grant for a commercial pilot of the company’s electric, zero emission excavator and electric wheeled loader in California.
The grant, administered by the South Coast Air Quality Management District (SAQMD), is funded by the US Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) Targeted Air Shed Grant Program, which helps agencies develop plans and conduct projects to reduce air pollution in areas with the highest level of smog and soot in the country.
SAQMD is responsible for attaining state and federal standards by improving air quality in the South Coast Air Basin of California.
Volvo CE will invest another $1.5 million on top of the awarded amount, which will raise the total project amount to $3.5 million.
The grant aims to accelerate the deployment of zero emission technologies for off-road mobile equipment, which is one of the major contributors to nitrogen oxide (NOx) emissions in the South Coast Air Basin.
The SAQMD region includes Orange County and major portions of Los Angeles, San Bernardino and Riverside counties, including the Coachella Valley.
“Off-road construction equipment accounts for 43 tons per day of NOx emissions in the South Coast Air Basin,” said Wayne Nastri, executive officer for SAQMD.
“We look forward to working with Volvo as they pave the way for the development of zero emission technologies in this sector.”
Volvo CE’s electric compact ECR25 excavator and L25 wheeled loader are currently being developed and tested in Europe. Volvo CE will adapt some configurations previously developed for the European programme and demonstrate the machines in real-life applications for a minimum of six months in California.
Tests will start during the second half of this year – September for the excavator and December for the wheeled loader.
Three customers in the South Coast Air Basin area will be selected to test the machines. The results of these demonstrations, together with customer feedback, will be reported to SAQMD.
This story was first published in sister magazine Diesel Progress.