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Covenant Bringing Zero-Emission Class 8 Trucks into Fleet
Jan 11, 2022

Covenant Logistics Group is joining the growing list of trucking companies doing its part to help the environment with a plan to add 50 zero-emission vehicles to its fleet over the next two years.

The collaboration with Nikola Corporation calls for Covenant to bring in 10 Nikola Tre battery-electric vehicles (BEV) and 40 Nikola Tre fuel cell electric vehicles (FCEV) upon the satisfactory completion of a demonstration program.

Delivery of the first BEV truck and mobile charging trailer for testing is expected to occur in the second quarter of this year. The FCEV testing is expected in 2023.

The Tre BEVs are “ideally suited” for short-haul, metro-regional runs and FCEV’s have an anticipated range of 500 miles, Pablo Koziner, the president of Nikola’s energy and commercial division, said.

“Nikola’s battery-electric and hydrogen roadmap fits perfectly with Covenant’s approach to sustainability as we increasingly work with customers to minimize their scope three emissions and meet their ESG initiatives,” Mark McClelland, Covenant’s vice president of sustainability and innovation, said in a news release announcing the collaboration. “Adoption of BEV and FCEV technologies are an important part of Covenant’s long term commitment to the decarbonization of freight and we are excited about this opportunity to partner with Nikola to meet these goals.”

Six states already have approved the advanced clean truck act that require medium- and heavy-duty trucks to be zero-emission starting in 2025. Manufacturers must increase their zero-emission truck sales in Oregon, Washington, New York, New Jersey, Massachusetts and California to between 30 and 50 percent by 2030 and 40 and 75 percent by 2025.

Maine has taken steps to adopt the rule in 2022, while Colorado, Illinois, Connecticut and Vermont have plans to study the regulations. In a memorandum of understanding in 2020, 15 governors and the mayor of Washington, D.C., have pledged to make 100 percent of bus and truck sales electric by 2050.

According to a 2021 report, medium- and heavy-duty trucks account for more than 60 percent of tailpipe nitrogen oxide and particulate emissions.

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