Sustainable Transportation

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A Mediaplanet Guide to Creating Sustainable EV Infastructure

Sustainable Transportion

Seth Leitman The “Green Living Guy” on the financial and environmental benefits of EV

Industry experts weigh in on the renewable energy evolution Everything you need to know as a first-time electric vehicle owner


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The “Green Living Guy” Talks Electric Vehicles Electric vehicle expert and green living activist Seth Leitman sees environmental and financial benefits to EVs. Electric vehicles (EVs) aren’t the future — they’re already here. Six major carmakers — BYD, Ford, General Motors, Jaguar Land Rover, Mercedes-Benz, and Volvo — have pledged to phase out gas- and diesel-powered vehicles by 2035, and several states have passed laws banning the sale of internal combustion engine vehicles by 2030.

Seth Leitman — aka Green Living Guy — thinks the only barriers to a transition to renewable energy on a national and global scale are pretty fundamental ones. “Political will,” he says. “Also, people listening to me — I mean that.” Living green Leitman, an electric vehicle expert and president of the Greater Hudson Valley Electric Auto Association, has been known as the Green Living Guy since 2005, when he began his media empire focused on sustainability.



“I realized how international institutions were basically screwing the environment for energy,” he says. “I believed in solar and wind but knew I needed to do more. I became Green Living Guy when I was leaving a partnership with an energy company. A buddy of mine suggested I create a ‘Green Living something’ brand. I said, when working for the New York Senate and talking green, some people would say ‘uh oh here comes that guy.’” Benefits of EVs Leitman is bullish on both the financial

and environmental benefits of EVs. “Electric cars take only two years to go carbon negative, assuming 12,000 miles per year of travel,” he notes. “Gas cars and even fuel cells today don’t come close!” In fact, EVs produce about one-third of the carbon dioxide per mile as a traditional car with an internal combustion engine. And EVs are cheaper to maintain. “The maintenance costs for EVs are really next to nothing,” Leitman says, noting the exception of the car’s tires, which are comparable in price. The low-


er-cost maintenance means that EVs are cheaper to own over time despite typically higher purchase prices. However, that initial investment can often be offset since EVs qualify for federal tax credits of up to $7,500 as well as potential state and city incentives. Leitman describes the EV industry as “cutthroat,” but sees great potential. “When collaboration gels, there’s nothing like it — greatness happens.” n

Jeff Somers


Publisher Briana Russell, Ellie Gouvia Business Developer Adrienne Macaluso Managing Director Jordan Hernandez Lead Designer Kayla Mendez Designer Celia Hazard Lead Editor Jon Adams Copy Editor Taylor Rice Director of Content and Production Jordan Hernandez All photos are credited to Getty Images unless otherwise specified. This section was created by Mediaplanet and did not involve LA Times.




Plug In America Offers Programs to Help Drivers Go Electric Plug In America, PlugStar, and Drive Electric Earth Day help consumers learn about the benefits of EVs and make the switch. Plug In America is a nonprofit organization with a variety of resources that help consumers switch to an electric vehicle (EV) powered by clean, affordable, domestic electricity. This will reduce our nation’s dependence on foreign oil, improve air quality, better public health, and reduce greenhouse gas emissions. EVs are beneficial to the environment, fun to drive, and oftentimes cheaper to own. The cars are easier to maintain (for example, you never need an oil change again) and don’t require expensive trips to the gas station. Going electric benefits the driver, their community, and the nation at large. Getting informed For those new to EVs, a great place to start is a Drive Electric Earth Day event. Throughout April, dozens of in-person and online events give EV enthusiasts and beginners alike the opportunity 4

to interact with EVs in a fun, non-sales environment. Attendees can test drive vehicles, talk to current EV owners, and see why more than 2 million Americans have already switched to electric! Interested buyers can then go to and find valuable resources to begin their EV journey. From start to finish, consumers can find the exact EV


they are searching for based on their budget, lifestyle, and other preferences. PlugStar also provides information on incentives (such as tax credits and rebates), charging (including home charging equipment and finding an electrician), and dealers trained and certified by Plug In America. This seamless experience provides people with everything

they need to know to drive electric. Plug In America also offers an EV Support Program through which prospective electric vehicle drivers can connect one-on-one with experts to have their questions answered, including questions about charging and incentives. From Drive Electric Earth Day to PlugStar to the EV Support Program, Plug In

America has the information drivers need to make the switch to electric in the most efficient way possible. Visit,, and for more information. n Belinda Cai, Communications Associate, Plug In America


Charge Ahead With Blue Arc EV Solutions Commercial industry requires innovation, flexibility, and strength from its EV solutions. The Shyft Group has built a complete EV ecosystem with that in mind.


he automotive industry’s future is electric. This is true for passenger cars and trucks as well as for commercial vehicles. Picture the fleets of package delivery vehicles roaming every city and suburb across America. To help meet current and future needs for retailers and delivery companies, The Shyft Group has launched Blue Arc™ EV Solutions, a new go-to-market brand with a trio of initial product offerings: an indus-

try-first, commercial grade EV chassis; a fully reimagined electric delivery van; and the Power Cube™, a portable, remote-controlled charging station. With a 50-year heritage in specialty vehicle chassis manufacturing and building bodies for last-mile delivery, Shyft is primed to deliver EV solutions at scale by leveraging its coast-to-coast manufacturing and service infrastructure. “We created Blue Arc not just for companies looking to evolve their delivery fleets to electric power, but

for people — customers, drivers, and society at large,” says Shyft CEO Daryl Adams. “Blue Arc is the electric mobility company that can deliver end-to-end holistic EV solutions and meet sustainability and performance goals with a full ecosystem of electric-powered products. We are ready to charge ahead and make the EV promise a reality.” The Blue Arc EV chassis features customizable length and wheelbase, making it well-suited to serve a wide range of end uses, from last-mile delivery to

work trucks, mass transit, recreational vehicles, and other emerging EV markets. The all-new, commercial-grade chassis is built specifically for the 12-hour days and near-continuous use of commercial vehicles. The Blue Arc van is a 100% battery-powered Class-3 electric commercial delivery vehicle, designed for high-usage last-mile delivery fleets. The spacious walk-in cargo area can be customized for the customer’s specific business needs and items being delivered, and the van features an integrated solar roof and lightweight aluminum honeycomb shelves. Drivers will appreciate the latest in-vehicle and driver safety systems such as 360° cameras, large in-dash HD camera displays, lane departure sensors, and keyless entry. Designed with comfort and productivity in mind, the delivery van is easy to drive and easy to enter and exit for last-mile deliveries with multi-stop routes. The Blue Arc ecosystem also includes the Power Cube, a fully portable remote-controlled charging station with onboard energy storage. Understanding

that lack of EV infrastructure is one of the roadblocks to adoption, the Power Cube provides a mobile, customizable, commercial-grade EV charger that does not need to be connected to the grid. This unique system carries power onboard and can have vehicles up and charged in 1-2 hours. The Power Cube is also sustainable, supplemented with wind and solar power with panels that track the sun for maximum exposure and charging. Come see for yourself the commercial-grade EV difference. The Shyft Group and Blue Arc EV Solutions will be at the Advanced Clean Transportation Expo, May 9-12, at the Long Beach Convention Center. n Daryl Adams, President and CEO, The Shyft Group

Visit to learn more.



Considering Going Electric? First Ask an EV Driver Thinking about purchasing or leasing an electric car? The only way to get the real story is to speak directly to an electric vehicle (EV) driver.


V owners are the most knowledgeable resources when it comes to questions like how much it costs to charge, what the maintenance costs are, and whether to go all-electric or plug-in hybrid. They love to share their real-world

driving experiences, and there are many places to find these willing information sources — even if you don’t know one personally. The best electric car tips will come from an EV driver in your community. They can tell you if your local electric utility has special rates to help keep

your electric bill low when you plug in, or what the costs were like to install solar. If you both live in an apartment, they can share how they got charging installed at their apartment community. They can also describe the availability of public charging stations and how to access them.

Word of mouth It’s getting easier to find a local EV driver. In September 2021, cumulative sales of electric cars in the United States hit 2.13 million, and word-of-mouth advertising is one prominent reason why EV sales have steadily increased. In one study of 5,000 Tesla Model 3 owners, 99% said they would recommend the car to family and colleagues. Such high remarks prove the success of a word-ofmouth model, given that Tesla doesn’t advertise. If you don’t already know someone who knows someone, there are a few places to find a knowledgeable EV driver. The all-volunteer nonprofit Electric Vehicle Association was founded on the premise of sharing the benefits

Debunking EV Infrastructure Myths AutoMobility LA and the LA Auto Show bust common EV myths. However, the biggest myth surrounding EVs isn’t range anymore — it’s inadequate infrastructure. People doubt whether the existing power grid can handle the demand if everyone goes out and buys an EV.


They think we’ll need to add a bunch of coal-burning power plants to power all those nice green EVs, decimating any potential benefit. However, this isn’t at all true. Firstly, many parts of the world use clean hydroelectric energy which makes this argument moot. The U.S. Department of Energy has a convenient calculator that tells you the emis-


sion benefits of an EV based on power generation in your area. It turns out that no matter where you are, the carbon emission over the entire lifecycle of an EV from cradle to grave is less than a gas-burning car. That means an EV’s contribution to pollution and greenhouse gases is smaller than a gasoline vehicle even when the power supplying the EV comes from coal.

Secondly, consumers suddenly embracing EVs won’t take down the grid. EV charging usually happens at work during the workday or at home overnight, and thus can be spread out over many hours. Most EV charging is during off-peak times where the grid demand is lower. In fact, millions of EVs can be added to the grid without any additional power plant capacity. Millions of EVs attached

of driving electric one-on-one in their communities and in a zero-pressure environment. There are 100 chapters throughout the United States, and their events and meetings are free. You can also use public charging locator apps to point you to the closest public charging station — often a grocery store, shopping center, or business parking lot — and meet drivers pulling in for a charge. They’ll often be willing to answer your questions, and you’ll soon realize that hearing these real-life experiences will make you confident that your next car will be electric. n

April Bolduc, Former President, Electric Vehicle Association,

to the grid will actually help buffer it from high-demand blackouts, helping to sustain our existing power grid. On the other side of the inadequate infrastructure myth is the belief that the infrastructure doesn’t exist and EVs can’t be an acceptable alternative until charging stations are as common as gas stations. Because almost all the drives we take are short (the U.S. Department of Transportation estimates Americans travel 40 miles per day), EVs will mostly charge at home or work. That means we’ll be able to use EVs for the vast majority of our travel without even considering charging infrastructure. Incidentally, that charging infrastructure amounts to 60,000 stations across the United States and Canada and continues to grow daily. Although there will always be remote routes that may require advanced planning to refuel, most of our vacations, road trips, and visits to grandma can be managed by a concentration of charging stations at expressway hot spots. n

Andy Gryc, Third Law, Los Angeles Auto Show Consultant

EV and the City: The Practical Future of Sustainable Transportation in Los Angeles Daryl Adams President and CEO, The Shyft Group

The mayor of Los Angeles and the CEO of The Shyft Group team up to discuss how they’re working to make electric vehicles a practical and sustainable reality. What does the future of transportation look like in the coming years? Daryl Adams: At The Shyft Group, we see the future of transportation as electric, connected, and flexible. It’s critical for the transportation industry to reduce its carbon footprint and leave a better planet for the future, while also providing people and businesses with a mobility ecosystem that fits their choices for how to work, live, and move around. For Shyft, with our focus on the commercial-vehicle side of transportation, we see these trends continuing well into the future. We are truly at the beginning of a foundational change across every form of transportation, in every part of the world. Why is it crucial now more than ever to advance the adoption of more zero-emissions vehicles?

DA: The statistics don’t lie: the transportation sector is the largest contributor to greenhouse gas emissions in the United States with about 30% of the total, and within that group, about half of the emissions come from the cars and trucks we drive on the road every day. As an industry, every company, every leadership team needs to look at their business and see where they can contribute towards changing this unfortunate truth. Electric vehicles are not only better for the environment, but they also cost less to maintain over the life of the vehicle, they are safe, and they are fun to drive with amazing amounts of power and torque. Eric Garcetti: Electric vehicles don’t just help cities steer away from dirty fossil fuels — they make cities healthier, more livable places for our families. More EVs fill the streets of Los Angeles than any other city in America, and that has helped us improve our air quality and reduce noise pollution, but we know that growth can’t be limited only to folks who can afford a brand-new EV. We have to make sure this transition reaches every Angeleno, regardless of zip code.

To do this, we created Blue L.A., the first EV car sharing service designed for communities with the fewest EVs. We’ve also offered robust incentive programs, including a $450 rebate for used EVs and up to a $500 reimbursement for chargers. With these changes and more, we want to ensure the communities on the front lines of the climate crisis are the first in line to reap the benefits of a more sustainable future. Can you debunk one or two myths surrounding the EV industry for our readers? DA: A lot of people believe you need to sacrifice payload and range with your EV, and it’s simply not true. We have a 50-year heritage in specialty vehicle chassis manufacturing and body building for last-mile delivery, so we know chassis performance. Our all-electric, commercial-grade chassis features heavy duty frame rails, commercial-grade 4000-cycle cells, and heavy-duty suspension. To support range, we’ve designed a lightweight aluminum and composite body that

provides an approximate range of 150 to 175 miles with the opportunity to enhance range through expanded battery options. EG: Many people falsely believe clean energy will mean higher energy bills. That’s just not true. In fact, the price of renewables has steadily decreased over the last decade and is trending toward becoming the cheapest option available. What’s more, where oil and natural gas prices have always been volatile, solar and wind will always cost us nothing to produce. And as energy storage and microgrids increasingly become the norm, clean power sources will become even more reliable, affordable, and cost-effective. What smart mobility solutions have you seen be the most effective in helping to support a green recovery in our cities and communities? DA: We know that infrastructure is one of the major roadblocks to fully adopting EVs. It’s difficult to truly adopt a greener solution when the

Eric Garcetti 42nd Mayor of Los Angeles

means to keep that solution running seems too difficult. We believe that flexibility is key, and that flexibility is what’s missing with current infrastructure options. To solve for this, we’ve introduced our fully portable, remote controlled charging station, the Blue Arc Power Cube™. It’s a highly customizable, commercial-grade EV charger. This solution carries power onboard and can have vehicles up and charged in one to two hours. It can also operate off the grid with power from integrated wind turbines or smart solar power with panels that track the sun for maximum exposure and charging. Which technologies would you say are crucial for the renewable energy evolution to continue? EG: Our main focus is twofold: protecting our environment while making economy work for everyone. To meet our goals, Los Angeles is making investments now that will pay off in the future with cleaner air, less reliance on fossil fuels, greater prosperity for our workforce, and a carbon-neutral future for our communities. n



Congress Should Deploy EVs To Save the Economy and the Climate

Electric vehicles can reduce emissions and dramatically boost our economy. Congress should pass the Build Back Better Act to make us all better off. The transportation sector is the only part of our economy where emissions continue to increase each year. That pollution is worsening the climate crisis and creating severe health problems in our communities. Fortunately, real solutions are at hand — and, if we pursue emissions reduction in a smart way, we will also drive historic economic growth. Electric vehicles (or EVs) have zero tailpipe emissions, and an overwhelming amount of research has established that EVs have drastically lower carbon footprints than gas-powered cars. By electrifying our transportation sector, we can reduce our pollution in a way that creates millions of jobs and puts trillions of dollars back in Americans’ pockets, leaving us all better off. An important start President Biden called for 50% of new cars sold in 2030 to be electric models, and he committed that the federal government — and its fleet — would achieve net-zero emissions by 2050. If we act now, these efforts will put us on track to avoid $1.3 trillion in public health and environmental costs in the coming decades. In addition, the United States’ EV industry will be able to create more than 2 million good-paying jobs. Congress has a pivotal role to play in accelerating this EV transition. The bipartisan infrastructure bill was an important start, providing funding for widespread, affordable EV charging infrastructure. Now, Congress must pass the Build Back Better Act to expand consumer incentives for EVs, including for used EVs and medium- and heavyduty EVs. The legislation will also help families and businesses install EV chargers in their communities, and the bill will make it easier to manufacture EVs in the United States. With so many clear public benefits for our economy, climate, and public health, we can’t miss this chance to electrify our transportation sector, which will make all Americans better off than they are today. n Joe Britton, Executive Director, Zero Emission Transportation Association



Leading The Charge on Electric Vehicles Infrastructure supporting a robust, consumer-friendly electric vehicle charging network is critical to meeting and increasing consumer demand for electric vehicles.


lectric vehicles (EVs) are at an inflection point. Both the automotive industry and policymakers recognize the importance that EVs will play in advancing a cleaner, safer, and smarter transportation future — and what is at stake to ensure the infrastructure framework is in place to support this historic transition. Strategies to incentivize consumer demand for EVs are paying off, resulting in encouraging sales trends. In Q3 of 2021, more than 168,500 electric vehicles were sold in the United States, up 82,000 units from the same period in 2020. This is thanks, in part, to the strides automakers have made in introducing a range of innovative new EV models, including crossovers, SUVs, and pickup trucks, which are part of the nearly 130 models that will be available for sale by 2026. EVs are no longer just for consumers looking for a 4-door sedan. Building success The public and private sectors are committed to building on this success and securing the future that EVs promise to deliver, as demonstrated by the shared goal of the automotive industry and the Biden administration of reaching a total of 40-50% EV sales by 2030. To meet this ambitious milestone, automakers are investing $330 billion in vehicle electrification by 2025, and the new infrastructure law makes a significant down payment on building EV charging

stations across the country. And there is much more work ahead. Some states are seeing exponential growth in the EV segment — California alone accounts for 40% of EV sales nationwide — and we hope to see this kind of growth in every corner of America in years to come. However, the act of

charging your electric vehicle remains one of the biggest challenges for consumers making the switch to EVs. Even in states like California that are leading on EV charging infrastructure, long charging wait times, lack of signage, and inconsistent pricing structures can make the process of charging more

difficult than that of refueling an internal combustion engine vehicle. Building a nationwide charging network that prioritizes the attributes consumers are looking for in charging stations will help us better satisfy the current marketplace and encourage even more consumers to make the shift to electric vehicles.

Securing the future There are several key elements we must consider as we look at the future of public charging infrastructure. Firstly, chargers should be quick and convenient so consumers can efficiently get back on the road. Varying electric vehicle technologies and configurations should also be supported to serve the greatest number of vehicle owners. Pricing and payment method should be standardized and easy to understand, and charging stations should be open and operational with the same reliability of a standard filling station. Consumers, the economy, and the planet will all benefit from policies that invest in electrification. Additionally, the nations that lead the development and adoption of innovative technologies, such as electrification, will also shape supply chains, define global standards, and, potentially, reshape the international marketplace. We have a once-in-a-generation opportunity to change the future of personal mobility. Technological advancement and innovation have already brought electric vehicles so far; with continued collaboration across various sectors, both public and private, there is no telling how much further we could go. n

John Bozzella, President and CEO, Alliance for Automotive Innovation



Shifting Into Sustainability: What Fleet Managers Should Prepare For

Fleet managers have helped ensure you received your deliveries — whether food, prescriptions, or other goods — during the COVID-19 pandemic. “They’re the unsung heroes of the pandemic,” says Maria Neves, vice president of electrification and sustainability for Donlen, a fleet management company, and secretary treasurer of NAFA Fleet Management Association on the Board of Directors. Now, Neves says, this crucial industry is undergoing a “sea of change” as more corporations and the federal government are pushing for their fleets to shift from gasoline fuel to electrification as adop10

tion of sustainable practices grows. Yet the onus is on fleet managers to organize, institute, and execute this transition.

issues,” she explains, “but it’s also dealing with drivers that might be unfamiliar with electric vehicles.”

Keeping up “China and Europe are far outpacing us from a sustainability standpoint in the transportation industry,” Neves says. “When it comes to instituting these sustainability measures, the corporations have all of these goals — and then it falls on the fleet manager to put them into practice.” Neves notes that this process is more complicated than one might think. “It’s not just ordering vehicles where you can’t get vehicles because of chip shortages and other supply chain

Complicated logistics For one, Neves said that drivers using electric vehicles, or EVs, now have to learn how to plan their route to accommodate for charging. However, the total cost of adoption is not only the acquisition of the vehicles, but also the charging infrastructure and the changing of fleet policies as well, Neves says. Fleet managers need to answer questions such as whether their fleet can charge at the most expensive time of day, and what the protocol is for materials collection or taxation if a driver


with an EV and a home charger leaves the company. “It all has to be spelled out in fleet policies before any of this moves forward,” Neves says. What’s more, industries that want to transition their fleets to EVs need not only consider installation of depots and chargers; they also need to consider facility management, utilities, construction, and project management. “We could be talking about everything from increasing the amount of power necessary to charge those vehicles to the orientation of the cars relative to the charging equipment,” Neves explains.

President Biden signed in November 2021 could help jumpstart fleets’ shifts to electrification and sustainability — though it may not be enough. “It is going to depend on private industry to push us over the line,” Neves says. She says this is an “exciting” time for fleet managers, “but there are lots of things to think about.” “We’re going to get there,” she says, “and there are companies that are pushing us there, but they’re taking the lead and saying if you want to follow, follow, but you’re going to be left in the dust if you’re not going to follow.” n

Steady progress The $1.2 trillion infrastructure bill that

Melinda Carter

Electric Trucks Are Good for the Climate as Well as Their Drivers The trucking industry is vital to the U.S. economy but disastrous to the earth’s climate, which is why the industry must shift to more sustainable vehicles and equitable hiring practices.


ore than ever, truck drivers are critical to our economy. More than 3.5 million dedicated drivers take to the roads each year, delivering essential goods to communities across the nation. The trucking industry hauled 72.5% of all freight transported in the United States in 2019, equating to 11.84 billion tons. While fundamental to our economy, diesel trucks are also in service much longer than most passenger vehicles, and these heavy-duty trucks are considered the largest mobile source of nitrogen oxide, a pollutant linked to heart and lung disease. Moving goods throughout our nation is an essential service, but it can be done cleaner, healthier, and more equitably with broad adoption of electric trucks.

Electric avenue Electric trucks charged on any power grid in the United States are better for the climate than any diesel truck, according to an analysis released by the Union of Concerned Scientists (UCS). The UCS found that there are many trucks whose operating characteristics are well suited for electrification. Two-thirds of U.S. trucks travel 20,000 miles or less each year — an average of 80 miles per day if driven five days per week and 50 weeks per year — well within the operating range of battery electric trucks operating on a single charge. In another bold move to tackle climate change, California recently passed the Advanced Clean Trucks (ACT) regulation, requiring automakers to sell more electric trucks starting in 2024, which is estimated to put

300,000 electric trucks on the road by 2035. Truck electrification in California has the potential to add more than $100 billion to California’s gross state product through 2050 and can support thousands of family-sustaining jobs in manufacturing and construction. Heavily trafficked areas like California’s 710 highway disproportionately bear the effects of diesel truck pollution. Low-income communities and communities of color situated next to these truck routes are more vulnerable to pollution-induced lung diseases, including in California’s South Coast Air Basin which is plagued by some of the worst air in the nation due to diesel truck pollution. Workers’ rights We must also recognize that truck drivers in some sectors of the industry

are among the most exploited workers in the United States. Drivers are often victims of “misclassification,” in which employers avoid paying taxes, wages, and benefits by classifying drivers as independent contractors. This practice is rampant in port trucking and segments of package delivery and long-haul trucking. From an environmental and equity perspective, misclassification makes it harder for drivers to upgrade to cleaner trucks, burdens them with compliance costs, and leaves the parent company off the hook. We can move to electric trucks in a way that ensures drivers earn a living wage, while creating more good jobs in the burgeoning electric truck market. According to the California Air Resources Board, there are more than 70 different models of zero-emission

vans, trucks, and buses that already are commercially available from several manufacturers. Most trucks and vans operate less than 100 miles per day and several zero-emission configurations are available to serve that need. As technology advances, zero-emission trucks will become suitable for more applications. Most major truck manufacturers have announced plans to introduce market-ready zero-emission trucks in the near future. Now is the time to plug into electric trucks across our nation to create high-quality jobs, reduce pollution, and improve the health of all the communities the trucking industry serves. n

JB Tengco, Western States Director, BlueGreen Alliance