Ready for Work

Now Is the Time for Heavy-Duty Electric Vehicles

Jimmy O'Dea

Published Dec 11, 2019

Ready for Work report page cover

Electric trucks and buses represent the next frontier for electric vehicles. Increasingly available, they have zero tailpipe emissions and lower life cycle global warming emissions compared with other types of trucks or buses.

Widespread electrification already makes sense for several classes of heavy-duty vehicles based on their operating characteristics, the range of today’s battery technologies, and similar if not cheaper ownership costs.

While internal combustion engines have been in use for more than a century, three types of policies can accelerate the electrification of trucks and buses: financial incentives, investments in charging infrastructure, and standards that increase the manufacture and purchase of heavy-duty electric vehicles. All of these policies should center on improving air quality in communities most burdened by vehicle pollution.


O'Dea, Jimmy. 2019. Ready for Work: Now Is the Time for Heavy-Duty Electric Vehicles. Cambridge, MA: Union of Concerned Scientists.

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