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CARB Reopens CORE Project with $125M in Incentives to Encourage Deployment of Zero-Emission Technology in Off-Road Applications

By Program UpdatesNo Comments

CALSTART-administered Project Provides Point-of-sale Discount Vouchers for Zero-Emission Off-Road Heavy-Duty Equipment

PASADENA – May 16, 2022 – What could be done with $125 million to reduce the environmental harm being done by off-road equipment? The California Air Resources Board (CARB) aims to find out and has announced the second round of its Clean Off-Road Equipment Voucher Incentive Project (CORE), tripling the amount of allocated funding from the previous round for equipment used in agriculture, airport, railyard, port, construction, and marine operations.

CORE first opened in February 2020 and closed that August after the total allocation of $44.6 million was exhausted. Due to high demand, $30 million of the FY 2021-22 allocation was appropriated ahead of CARB’s board meeting to fund vouchers on a contingency list. The project’s relaunch, scheduled to begin in July 2022, will have $125 million in available funds.

CORE is part of California Climate Investments, a statewide initiative that puts billions of Cap-and-Trade dollars to work reducing greenhouse gas emissions, strengthening the economy, and improving public health and the environment — particularly in disadvantaged communities.

CORE encourages and assists purchasers and lessees of off-road equipment – agricultural tractors, forklifts, airport cargo loaders, container loaders, railcar movers and the like – in acquiring zero-emission versions of this equipment. While conventional internal-combustion engine (ICE) off-road equipment accounts for only a small percentage of all vehicles in California, shifting over to zero-emission equipment can help reduce the significant amount of greenhouse gasses these vehicles release.

The project is streamlined for ease of use. Those who qualify will be provided vouchers by CORE for point-of-sale discounts on off-road equipment, up to a maximum of $500,000 per voucher, and will not have to retire or sell their existing ICE equipment (called a “scrappage” requirement). There will also be additional funding for charging/refueling infrastructure equipment operated in disadvantaged communities and for small businesses.

“California is backing up its commitment to clean the air in overburdened communities with a significant investment in zero-emission vehicles and sustainable transportation,” CARB Deputy Executive Officer Craig Segall said. “CORE is specifically designed to assist industry sectors that currently use off-road equipment and can help clean up the communities hardest hit by air pollution.”

The project, administered by the national clean transportation non-profit CALSTART, is expected to reduce emissions, particularly in the most impacted areas; help build confidence in zero-emission technology in support of CARB strategies and subsequent regulatory efforts; and provide benefits such as technology transferability, reductions in advanced-technology component costs and larger infrastructure investments.

“CORE increases awareness and uptake of zero-emission equipment across many industry sectors and also sends market signals to manufacturers who can bring more of this equipment to the market,” said Niki Okuk, deputy director at CALSTART.  “We are looking forward to the new products coming online and the improvements in emission reductions and air quality.”

There are nine funding categories of zero-emission equipment that CORE supports, including:

  • On- and off-road terminal tractors
  • Truck- and trailer-mounted transport refrigeration units (TRUs)
  • Large forklifts and cargo-handling equipment
  • Airport ground-support equipment
  • Railcar movers and switcher locomotives
  • Mobile power units (MPUs) and mobile shore-power cable management systems
  • Construction equipment
  • Agricultural equipment
  • Commercial harbor craft

The equipment eligible under these categories is manufactured and sold by such companies as:

Orange EV                     Kalmar          eNow

Kalmar Ottawa             AEM              Shuttlewagon

ITW                                Dannar          Worldwide Forklifts

BYD                                Wiggins

Freewire                        Zephir-Trackmobile

To become an approved CORE manufacture or dealer visit californiacore.org. If you are a purchaser interested in zero-emission equipment visit the project page for more information.

About California Air Resources Board (CARB)

CARB’s mission is to promote and protect public health, welfare, and ecological resources through effective reduction of air pollutants while recognizing and considering effects on the economy. CARB is the lead agency for climate change programs and oversees all air pollution control efforts in California to attain and maintain health-based air quality standards.

About CALSTART

A national nonprofit consortium with offices in New York, Michigan, Colorado, California, Washington, D.C., central Europe and partners world-wide, CALSTART works with 300+ member company and agency innovators to build a prosperous, efficient and clean high-tech transportation industry. We knock down barriers to modernization and the adoption of clean vehicles. CALSTART is changing transportation for good.

 

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California CORE Project FY21-22 Changes

By Program Updates, Funding Updates, News

On Friday, November 19, 2021 the California Air Resources Board (CARB) conducted a Board Meeting via Zoom to present programmatic changes to current clean transportation incentives, including potential changes to the California Clean Off-Road Equipment (CORE) Project. CARB announced it has allocated approximately $195 million to continue funding the CORE Project for FY21-22.

Potential changes to the CORE Project for FY21-22: Based on Board priorities and input received from stakeholders, staff is considering the following changes to the program:

  • Equity and Small Business Considerations: Staff will evaluate methods to build awareness and make funds more accessible to small businesses while continuing to prioritize the deployment of CORE-funded equipment in low-income, disadvantaged, underserved and rural communities. This includes a $30 million set-aside for zero-emission small off-road equipment purchases made by small California landscaping companies or sole proprietors following legislative direction.
  • New Equipment Categories: Staff has received interest from manufacturers of off-road equipment types that are not currently eligible to participate in CORE, such as those used in construction, agriculture, and lawn and garden. Staff sees a significant opportunity to expand the eligible equipment categories to include equipment used in these industries.
  • Voucher Amounts, Off-Ramps for Mature Equipment Categories, and Other Programmatic Changes: CORE is intended to spur market growth of advanced technology in off-road equipment. Staff will continue to adjust voucher levels in a way that continues to move the needle to advance technology, ensure equipment diversity, and maximize the impact of available funding. Potential adjustments could include reducing voucher amounts for equipment categories that are further along in their commercialization arc, establishing project caps, and adjusting enhancements, as appropriate.

These changes and plans to reopen the project to new voucher requests, and other topics to be included in the FY 2021-22 Implementation Manual will be discussed in more detail in upcoming CORE Workgroup meetings beginning of 2022. Information about upcoming workgroup meetings will be announced via GovDelivery notice soon (follow link to subscribe to CORE GovDelivery email notifications if you have not already). CALSTART will provide more details via email.

For questions or comments, please email [email protected].

California Air Resources Board announces new incentive program for clean off-road freight and cargo handling equipment

By Uncategorized, Program Updates, Funding Updates, News

SACRAMENTO – The California Air Resources Board today announced the launch of a new $40 million program designed to accelerate the purchase and use of zero-emission off-road freight technologies.  The “Clean Off-Road Equipment Voucher Incentive Project” (CORE) will feature a streamlined voucher process for buyers to receive funding that will offset the higher costs of clean, zero-emission equipment including terminal tractors, transport refrigeration units, cargo-handling equipment and more.

“Forward-thinking, savvy business owners will want to take advantage of CORE because it will enable them to replace their dirty older equipment and get the cleanest, most advanced models available for about the same price as the diesel- or gas-powered version.  The result is equipment that saves businesses on fuel costs and has zero tailpipe emissions—a winner for the pocketbook and the community,” said CARB Executive Officer Richard W. Corey.

Under the CORE program  a business owner could receive $180,000 to cover the difference between a zero-emission tractor and one that is powered by diesel. The program also encourages deployment of cleaner technology in disadvantaged communities by providing up to 10 percent higher incentives for zero-emission equipment that will be used in these areas..  Awards can’t exceed $500,000 per piece of equipment.

CORE is based on California’s popular Hybrid and Zero-Emission Truck and Bus Voucher Incentive Project (HVIP), which is helping to facilitate and commercialize use of clean on-road technologies by transit agencies throughout the state. From its inception in 2009, more than $447 million has been allocated to HVIP.  The investment will bring the total number of ultra-clean trucks and buses operating on California’s roadways to more than 7,000 over the next two years with more on the way, as demand for vouchers continues to grow. Additionally, HVIP has helped more than 1,100 California fleets buy cleaner vehicles.

CALSTART, a national nonprofit consortium that works with innovators to advance modernization and adoption of clean vehicles, administers HVIP, and was recently awarded the contract to administer the CORE program.  Both programs are funded by California Climate Investments, the statewide initiative that puts billions of Cap-and-Trade dollars to work reducing greenhouse gas emissions, strengthening the economy and improving public health and the environment—particularly in disadvantaged communities.

CORE targets commercialized zero-emission products, including the types of equipment listed below. Other equipment categories may be added in the future.

  • On- and off-road terminal tractors
  • Transport refrigeration units
  • Forklifts (greater than 8,000 lbs. lift capacity)
  • Container handling equipment
  • Airport cargo loaders
  • Wide-body aircraft tugs
  • Railcar movers
  • Rubber-tired gantry (RTG) cranes

To obtain CORE discounts, business owners will work with CORE-approved dealers to choose the appropriate equipment. Buyers will receive the discount at the point of sale. The dealer then submits a CORE voucher request form on behalf of the buyer and is reimbursed once all required paperwork is provided and the new zero-emission equipment is delivered to the buyer. Funds for the new program are available on a first-come, first-served basis.

Anyone interested in buying equipment through the CORE program should note that their fleets must already be in full compliance with the state’s existing applicable regulations (Truck and Bus, TRU, Off-Road, Large Spark Ignition, Cargo-Handling, etc.).  The CORE program cannot be used to bring fleets into compliance.

CORE funding is expected to be available before the end of the year.

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