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U.S.-China Race to Zero Emissions Challenge guidelines released

Staff Writer |
The U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT) and the Chinese Ministry of Transport (MOT) announced the official guidelines for the U.S.-China Race to Zero Emissions (R2ZE) Challenge.

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The guidelines provide details on how the race will be conducted and how transit agencies can join the race.

The R2ZE was officially announced by Secretary Foxx and China’s Minister of Transport Yang Chuantang during the eighth U.S.-China Transportation Forum on June 3, 2016, in Los Angeles.

The R2ZE is a collaborative and friendly competition between transit agencies in the United States and China that encourages transit providers to deploy a new generation of advanced, non-polluting zero emission buses (ZEBs) in communities across the U.S. and China.

This is a voluntary program targeting transit agencies that have deployed or are planning to deploy ZEBs in their systems.

The R2ZE aims to reduce greenhouse gas and criteria emissions and to spur demand and innovation for zero emission heavy-duty vehicle technology.

The “winner(s)” of the race will be the U.S. and Chinese transit providers with the highest percentage operational ZEBs in their category in the year 2025.

There will be three different cohorts of participants based on the size of operations. The participating transit properties will be placed into one of the three following groups based on the overall number of buses in their fleets: 50 or less, 51 to 250, and 251 or higher.

Having three different cohorts will allow transit properties of similar sizes to compete with each other.

Recognizing that the Chinese transit bus sector is significantly larger than that of the United States, China’s MOT is in the process of creating its own grouping of domestic cohorts. The challenge features buses that are powered by on-board batteries or fuel cells.

Each year, DOT and MOT will announce and recognize the cities or transit properties in both countries that have made the most progress compared to the previous year, as well as acknowledge the participants in each cohort with the highest percentage of zero-emission buses.

The DOT and MOT will also be working to establish opportunities on an annual basis in which transit properties and cities can come together, share information, and identify lessons learned from operations in both countries.

Presently there are about 60 U.S. transit properties that have either deployed or plan to deploy zero emission buses.

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