First All-Electric Cargo Equipment implemented at Tacoma’s South Intermodal Yard
The six electric cargo trucks are the outcome of a key partnership between The Northwest Seaport Alliance, Tacoma Power, Rail Management Services, and grant funding from the Diesel Reduction Act (DERA).
TACOMA – The South Intermodal Yard (SIM) in Tacoma will be the first location for all-electric yard handling equipment in The Northwest Seaport Alliance (NWSA) gateway. The SIM Electric Truck Project represents a $2.2 million investment for equipment purchase and infrastructure installation supported by funding from Tacoma Power, Rail Management Services and DERA grant funds.
“The NWSA is very excited to welcome the first all-electric yard handling equipment to Tacoma”, stated NWSA Managing Member Co-Chair and Port of Tacoma Commission President Don Meyer. “This is delivering on our commitment to reduce maritime emissions through the Northwest Ports Clean Air Strategy while also increasing operational efficiency and demonstrating the effectiveness of zero-emission equipment in our gateway.”
“Partnerships like this move our community forward toward a clean energy future,” said Clay Norris, Power Manager for Tacoma Power. “Transportation is the top polluter in our region, and we can help combat that by transitioning the fueling of vehicles to our clean, renewable hydroelectric energy.”
In 2020, the NWSA was awarded $732,000 in Diesel Reduction Act (DERA) grant funding which supported the purchase of six electric yard trucks by Rail Management Services. The terminal tractors were furnished by pure electric heavy-duty truck company, Orange EV. The project has been further supported by Tacoma Power’s Cargo and Material Handling Equipment and Hostler Trucks program with $132,000 for infrastructure components of the project.
Each electric yard truck will be used to move containers on chassis to and from container stacks and rail cars. Rail Management Services has experience successfully deploying zero-emission cargo handling equipment in other locations around the country.
Over the lifetime of the equipment and with grant funds included, purchase and operational costs of the electric trucks will be near that of current diesel cargo equipment models, making this investment a strategic environmental benefit to surrounding port areas.
The SIM Electric Yard Truck project is expected to reduce GHG’s and diesel particulate matter in the NWSA gateway by approximately 259 tons per year and 1.41 tons per year, respectively. Electricity is not only cleaner than traditional diesel equipment, but has operational advantages such as being less expensive to operate and requiring less maintenance due to fewer moving parts.
About The Northwest Seaport Alliance
The Northwest Seaport Alliance, which includes the marine cargo operations of the ports of Seattle and Tacoma, is the fourth-largest container gateway in the United States. The NWSA also manages breakbulk, auto and bulk terminals, handling over 3.7 million TEUs (containers) in 2021 and driving $12.4 billion in economic activity in Washington state.
About Tacoma Power
Tacoma Power is a division of Tacoma Public Utilities. Publicly owned since 1893, we provide electric service to nearly 179,000 customers in Tacoma, University Place, Fircrest and portions of Fife, Lakewood, Federal Way, Steilacoom, Joint Base Lewis-McChord and unincorporated Pierce County, as far south as Roy. For more information, visit MyTPU.org/TacomaPower.