The alliance to speed up the electric vehicle transition

05 February 2020 by Grace Coleman
blog author

​Major companies including Amazon and IKEA North America are joining forces to help in the transition to electric vehicles (EV) in the fight against our climate crisis.

Ceres, the not-for-profit organization which specializes in sustainability, has announced the launch of the new Corporate Electric Vehicle Alliance, which the company is leading to push for an expanded EV market.

It is hoped the alliance will enable members to achieve ambitious commitments to fleet electrification and will also provide a platform to coordinate support for policies that enable such electrification.

The Corporate Electric Vehicle Alliance is expected to give the electric vehicle market a boost by expanding the business case for a more diverse array of EV models.

Sue Reid, VP of climate and energy at Ceres, said: “The climate crisis demands we decarbonize transportation - the highest-emitting sector in the U.S. - and electric vehicles are an essential component of this transition.

“With companies controlling more than half the vehicles on the road in the U.S. today, they have a tremendous role to play in leading the transition to electric vehicles - both in terms of electrifying their own fleets and in leveraging their buying power to send a strong market signal to automakers and policymakers alike. The Corporate Electric Vehicle Alliance is where the rubber hits the road.”

Companies can benefit from electric vehicles by saving costs on fuel and maintenance, reduced greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions, freedom from reliance on oil and gas prices, enhanced company reputation and a strengthened workforce recruitment and retention.

Ceres launched the alliance to accelerate the EV market which needs to develop faster to meet corporate needs. Automakers are not producing the necessary range of EV models at the economies of scale many fleet operators need.

Sara Forni, senior manager of Clean Vehicles at Ceres, said: “Many companies understand the myriad benefits of fleet electrification, but they’re lacking a supportive alliance of like-minded peers committed to sharing best practices and collaborating to move the market.

“The Corporate Electric Vehicle Alliance is filling that gap, and powering companies forward into the low-carbon future.”

The alliance will provide a platform for members to collectively identify challenges and potential solutions, and to leverage aggregate corporate demand to:

• Production of new and increased volumes of EV models

• EV market growth and economies of scale

• Adoption of supportive policies and the removal of policy barriers

• Peer-to-peer learning for industry best practices

Key members of the alliance are Amazon, AT&T, Clif Bar, Consumers Energy, DHL, Direct Energy, Genentech, IKEA North America, LeasePlan, Lime, and Siemens. They operate some of the largest fleets in the U.S. with some who have already made significant commitments to electric vehicles and will look to the Corporate Electric Vehicle Alliance to help them meet their goals.

Mike Parra, CEO, DHL Express Americas, said: “DHL is very excited to be joining the Corporate Electric Vehicle Alliance as a founding member.

“As part of our commitment to achieve net zero emissions from transport activities by 2050 globally, we have set the ambitious interim target of performing 70 percent of first- and last-mile operations with green vehicles by 2025.

“Electric vehicles will play an important role in reaching that target, so we very much welcome the Alliance’s efforts to realize the potential of EVs and accelerate their production and integration into transport networks around the world.”

Andrew Savage, vice president sustainability, Lime, said: “The future of transportation is electric. From shared electric scooters to managing our programs with clean electric operations vehicles, we know that advancing electric transport is the path to a zero-carbon future.

“We’re excited to join Ceres and other industry leaders in forging the rapid transition we need toward cleaner transportation necessary to effectively combat the climate crisis.”