The California Public Utilities Commission (CPUC) has approved San Diego Gas & Electric (SDG&E) to build charging infrastructure for medium-duty and heavy-duty electric vehicles used in transit and logistics operations.
The approval is for charging equipment to power a minimum of 3,000 electric vehicles such as transit buses, school buses, delivery trucks, and forklifts in the San Diego area. This initiative also supports the electrification of refrigerated semi-truck trailers, which are vital in city logistics.
The approval was granted in part due to innovative technology where buses can provide energy back to the grid. The initial proposal though had been handed in already in January 2018.
SDG&E’ claims this to be the first large-scale program of its kind in the region as others mainly aim to charge passenger cars. More so, the service areas of SDG&E, San Diego and southern Orange County, is home to more than 103,000 Class 2 through Class 8 commercial vehicles, including trucks that operate around the congested ports of entry along the U.S.-Mexico border and the Port of San Diego, meaning the potential for expansion is enormous.
The heavy-duty EV program will be implemented over five years. Meanwhile, the utility is also running the Power Your Drive scheme under which SDG&E has installed around 3,000 chargers at apartments, condo complexes and workplaces. As part of separate pilot programs, SDG&E is also installing charging equipment for ground support vehicles at the San Diego International Airport, and trucks, forklifts and other equipment at the Port of San Diego.