New Trucking Coalition Focuses on Clean Energy

Clean Freight Coalition Includes ATA
Clean Freight Coalition
Clean Freight Coalition

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A broad-based group representing motor carriers, truck manufacturers and truck dealers has launched a coalition intended to serve as a collective voice for key trucking industry stakeholders.

Members of the group, known as the Clean Freight Coalition, include American Trucking Associations, American Truck Dealers, National Tank Truck Carriers, Truckload Carriers Association and Truck & Engine Manufacturers Association, according to a March 23 announcement.

The coalition’s mission includes:

  • Educate policymakers on the progress the trucking industry has made in reducing emissions and protecting the environment.
  • Promote the work underway to reduce greenhouse gas emissions from freight transportation.
  • Advocate for sound public policies that transition toward a zero-emission future in a manner that ensures affordable and reliable freight transportation and protects the nation’s supply chain.

Jim Mullen will serve as CFC’s executive director. Mullen has extensive regulatory, legislative and legal experience within the industry, having served as acting administrator and chief counsel of the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration, chief administrative and legal officer for autonomous driving technology company TuSimple and general counsel for Werner Enterprises.

Jim Mullen


“Trucking is the backbone of our economy and critical to the nation’s supply chain,” Mullen said. “It is an honor to lead the CFC in its pursuit to get to zero emissions in a responsible and feasible manner.”

“The trucking industry starts with ‘Yes,’ as we’ve demonstrated through massive emission reductions over the last three decades,” ATA President Chris Spear said. “To get to zero, we must be honest and transparent about the road ahead. Success depends on a national energy strategy that is inclusive of our industry — the most central and critical link in the supply chain.”

“America’s truck dealers sell and service the newest, cleanest and safest trucks available,” ATD President Laura Perrotta said. “Truck dealers are essential to turning over America’s aging truck fleet, and with nearly half of America’s trucking fleet over 10 years old, there is a lot of work this new coalition can do together to prepare the marketplace for the next generation of clean trucks.”

NTTC President Ryan Streblow stated, “The tank truck industry leans into new technologies, embracing improvements to make equipment safer for the motoring public, as well as for our environment more than ever before.

“Tank trucks deliver over one-fourth of all truck tonnage in North America, much of which is providing critical energy sources to all Americans. Looking ahead, we stand ready with our partners to embrace and help implement new scalable technologies and infrastructure on a timeline which is obtainable.”

The U.S. commercial trucking industry is in the midst of a transformation that promises to bring more zero-emission equipment to fleets, including electric and fuel cell-powered trucks.

“Truck and engine manufacturers are leading the way to cleaner air through investment, innovation and engineering,” EMA President Jed Mandel said. “EMA members are dedicating billions of R&D dollars toward a zero-emission vehicle future, but those investments won’t be enough on their own.

“We also need state and federal leaders to commit to building the essential infrastructures for those vehicles to operate nationwide. We are committed to working with policymakers to ensure a smooth and successful transition that aligns ZEV production to infrastructure availability.”

Jim Ward, president of the Truckload Carriers Association, added, “Truckload has long been on the road to zero — embracing new advancements in emissions-reducing technology and critical improvements to infrastructure. The key to our shared success will be in establishing a realistic timeline and multiple-solution approach that ensures productivity for drivers and reliability within the supply chain for consumers.

“For this to happen, we need carrier involvement in all stages of the testing process to help identify operational challenges on the ground. All modes of our industry stand ready to work together to prepare for this essential transition.”

The group’s literature maintains that, “it’s not a question of if we get to zero emissions, but when.”

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“The transition away from carbon-based fuels must be a careful process,” according to the group’s website. “Success depends on cost parity, the right market incentives, necessary infrastructure and access to a wide array of scarce natural resources.”

The successful transition to electric and hydrogen trucks requires clear national standards that are technology neutral, empower innovation, and enable industry to plan and invest, the group said.

“We need government policies and programs that provide sufficient lead time, create regulatory stability for consumers and manufacturers, and support necessary infrastructure development,” according to the coalition.