GRA
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Bill in Calif. Leg. would increase weight limits for zero- and near-zero-emission vehicles to make them more competitive

Wed Feb 21, 2018 8:29 pm

Via GCC:
Bill in California Assembly would increase weight limits for zero- and near-zero-emission vehicles to make them more competitive
http://www.greencarcongress.com/2018/02/20180220-ab2061.html


California State Assemblymember Jim Frazier, D-Discovery Bay, chairman of the Assembly Transportation Committee, has introduced legislation (AB 2061) that would increase the weight limits for zero-emission and near-zero-emission vehicles so they can compete on an equal playing field with diesel- and gasoline-powered units.

The engine and propulsion systems in electric, hydrogen and natural gas powered trucks weigh more than the traditional internal combustion engine by as much as 2,000 pounds. These cleaner energy trucks currently have to reduce their carrying capacity in order to comply with state weight laws, providing a disincentive for businesses to invest in cleaner trucks, Frazier said.

To counter this, AB 2061 stipulates that:

    A near-zero-emission or zero-emission vehicle may exceed axle, tandem, gross, or bridge formula weight limits by an amount, not to exceed a maximum of 2,000 pounds, that is equal to the difference between the weight of the vehicle attributable to the fueling system carried by that vehicle and the weight of a comparable diesel tank and fueling system.

Research by the California Air Resources Board finds that transportation accounts for nearly 40% of all of the state’s greenhouse gas emissions. Diesel and gasoline big rigs and other heavy-duty trucks are the most concentrated source, making up only 3% of the vehicles on the road but accounting for 23% of transportation emissions.

[list]Major transportation corridors tend to run next to lower-income and disadvantaged communities and the pollution from these trucks disproportionately impacts this segment of our population. The issue is also one of environmental justice. Our obligation to protect all Californians makes it even more imperative to speed up replacing dirty trucks with cleaner ones.

—Jim Frazier. . . .[/list]

Considering the condition of the state's roads and highways I lean against this although I sympathize with the motivation, as we just upped the state gas tax to provide funds to do long-deferred maintenance. Naturally, Tesla and other AFV truck manufacturers are in favor. I'd rather see the trucks used in roles where excess weight isn't going to be an issue, until such time as excess weight is no longer a problem for these techs. But then I'm also not in favor of SO HOV stickers, and the legislature obviously disagrees.
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DarthPuppy
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Re: Bill in Calif. Leg. would increase weight limits for zero- and near-zero-emission vehicles to make them more competi

Wed Feb 21, 2018 10:10 pm

Interesting proposal. I concur that this is problematic given our poor state of roads and an extra 2,000 pounds on the top weight of a vehicle would be even harsher on the roads.

But to be honest, by this day and age, we should have higher quality roads. We've already paid for them through tax increases multiple times but the funding gets shell-gamed away. And the most recent gas tax will be the same as the 'protections' was to restrict the funds for transportation, which means it was sold for the roads but will be used for the high speed train, or possibly to electrify the 710 freeway.

Is this an attempt by Tesla to give them an advantage over Fuel Cell powered trucks? Would a FCEV truck weigh much more than a traditional diesel truck?

Yes, we need to encourage clean trucking. Not sure this is the way to do it.
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RegGuheert
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Re: Bill in Calif. Leg. would increase weight limits for zero- and near-zero-emission vehicles to make them more competi

Thu Feb 22, 2018 5:02 am

If you allow this and consider that the Tesla Semi and probably other trucks will use super single wheels on the back of the truck you will likely be doing a bit more damage to the roads than traditional trucks. Frankly, we have enough difficulty keeping our roads in decent shape as it is.

My opinion is that BEV trucking needs to "pull its own weight" in this regard. This is a huge market and it will take time to replace the existing fleets of the world. Even if we could build BEV trucks at a very rapid pace (and we can't), we would find that we would not be able to keep up with the electricity demand such a fleet of trucks would create.

Let's keep our clean trucks within weight and let them compete on a level playing field. They can grow into the longer-range routes as battery technology and/or charging infrastructure improves. In the meantime, they can dominate routes where they offer high value.

FWIW, in the area of BEV transit buses, Proterra is fielding extremely-competitive offerings and claims to have LOWER weight and carry more passengers than their ICE counterparts. While I realized that is a different market and not directly comparable, I think this is the direction we need to be moving with BEVs. At the end of the day we need BEV solutions to be "no compromise" solutions.
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rmay635703
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Re: Bill in Calif. Leg. would increase weight limits for zero- and near-zero-emission vehicles to make them more competi

Thu Feb 22, 2018 8:22 am

Most of the US has an 80,000lb limit, this change brings the Cali limit up to what 42,000lbs?

SageBrush
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Re: Bill in Calif. Leg. would increase weight limits for zero- and near-zero-emission vehicles to make them more competi

Thu Feb 22, 2018 3:23 pm

Trucks are not paying their fair share in road taxes, in the sense of being proportional to damages.
CA can start by coming up with an honest model, and then tax accordingly by truck weight.

If needed to be competitive, EV trucks can always add another axle.
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GRA
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Re: Bill in Calif. Leg. would increase weight limits for zero- and near-zero-emission vehicles to make them more competi

Thu Feb 22, 2018 3:51 pm

DarthPuppy wrote:Is this an attempt by Tesla to give them an advantage over Fuel Cell powered trucks? Would a FCEV truck weigh much more than a traditional diesel truck?

Yes, FCEVs are heavier as well, although not as much as BEVs for longer ranges. As with ICEs, the FCEV weight and cost is mainly in the power generation equipment (engine/fuel cell stack), not in energy storage, so increasing range requires much smaller weight and cost increases.
Last edited by GRA on Thu Feb 22, 2018 4:12 pm, edited 1 time in total.
Guy [I have lots of experience designing/selling off-grid AE systems, some using EVs but don't own one. Local trips are by foot, bike and/or rapid transit].

The 'best' is the enemy of 'good enough'. Copper shot, not Silver bullets.

GRA
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Joined: Mon Sep 19, 2011 1:49 pm
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Re: Bill in Calif. Leg. would increase weight limits for zero- and near-zero-emission vehicles to make them more competi

Thu Feb 22, 2018 3:54 pm

rmay635703 wrote:Most of the US has an 80,000lb limit, this change brings the Cali limit up to what 42,000lbs?

82,000 lb. (I assume 42,000 was a typo). I'll try and monitor if this goes anywhere, but RegGuheert and I seem to have the same opinion of this proposal (which is a minor miracle in itself :lol:). Here's the bill's page, with current weight limits:

http://leginfo.legislature.ca.gov/faces/billTextClient.xhtml?bill_id=201720180AB2061
Guy [I have lots of experience designing/selling off-grid AE systems, some using EVs but don't own one. Local trips are by foot, bike and/or rapid transit].

The 'best' is the enemy of 'good enough'. Copper shot, not Silver bullets.

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