An Effective Solution for A Better Future: Electric Heavy-duty Vehicles

An Effective Solution for A Better Future: Electric Heavy-duty Vehicles

We see heavy-duty vehicles on the streets every day. They carry our products, fuels, materials and other loads to somewhere. But, are you aware of increasing their numbers? Although it’s a real problem for traffic, it’s not limited to it. Their fuel consumption is another issue for our daily life quality and the future of our planet. But how? The answer is clear: Carbon emission.

Heavy-duty vehicles are one of the main carbon emission resources in the world. They’re only 1% of the fleet vehicles in the world, but they caused 25% of global carbon emissions. How could this be true? Because a clear majority of these vehicles operate with diesel motors. And the diesel motors produce harmful nitrogen-oxide and particles. These risky outputs are more dangerous because of the high capacity of heavy vehicles. They must go to longer destinations and transport heavier loads. So, they need more fuel than other vehicles and it means they cause more greenhouse gas for our world.

Heavy-duty vehicles create more fuel pollution for human health than others, but not only because of their tonnage! Why? Because these vehicles are driven between the roads in urbanized areas. Therefore, they spread the fuel pollution over larger masses, besides traffic density. But, national and international restrictions related to carbon footprint at the door and the countries are taking some measures regarding the fuel consumption of heavy-duty vehicles. For instance; the U.S. government aims to reduce the carbon emission which is caused by these vehicles by 27% lower than 2017 emissions in the following 5 years.


Can electric heavy-duty vehicles be a solution for zero carbon emission?

Electric cars are the new orange of today’s world. They’re the optimum solution for reducing the air pollution in the cities and reducing the carbon emission caused by transportation. But, are the batteries effective for heavy-duty vehicles? Long and heavy-duty vehicles go through further destinations and need more power to carry their burdens. Hence they need bigger batteries and it limits their capacity negatively.

Initial capital investment and operating costs are really important elements for the companies about heavy-duty trucks. Because these two points are disincentives for the investors who are active in the logistics industry that brings a narrow band of profits.

However, these issues are seen to be solved in the long run. So many professionals in the electric vehicles industry think that batteries will be 50% cheaper than today in 2030, and they base on the truth that batteries are 85% cheaper than in 2012 today. This point is crucial for the electrification of heavy-duty vehicles, because of their operating range which can be high up to 160000 km. Battery sizes are getting bigger day by day and this change probably will make electric heavy-duty vehicles more functional. Specially-designed batteries for trucks may provide the power they need up to 800km at one charge.

Even though there are some challenges with heavy-duty vehicles, collaboration is the key at this stage. So, producers, governments and infrastructure providers should create an innovative coalition. Because only a powerful consensus like this can make electric heavy-duty vehicles more commercialized and sustainable. And international financial support is essential for it and EU funds for carbon offsetting can play an important role in this step. One the attempts in this way about nine highways within Trans-European Transport Network. European CEO Alliance offered to use 25% of the 750 billion Euros budget of NextGenerationEU resources to build 8000 charging points on these highways. 


A model country: Norway

Some countries go forward more than the others and Norway is of them. The country aims to use only zero-emission vehicles as of 2025. The Scandinavian country also aims to be the first county which has fully-electrified transportation. These perspectives are so strong that means Norway may also lead the process for our world related to electric heavy-duty vehicles.

Global warming and climate change are the most dangerous risks for today’s world. We haven’t so much time and the only thing that can save humankind is us. We have technological and economic resources, innovative thinking skills and professional human resources. So, we must take action for electric heavy-duty vehicles as soon as possible and make electrified all of them for a greener and zero-emission transportation network. Tax advantages, aids for capital expenditure, discounted highway tolls and tighter emission limits will save us from the dangerous risks of fuel consumption on heavy-duty vehicles.