Zero emissions policy introduced for heavy vehicles

The New South Wales Government has released a new net zero emissions policy for heavy vehicles.

The Towards Net Zero Emissions Freight Policy will see the NSW Government work together with industry to support the transition to low and zero emission technologies, and to ensure the transport network is ready to adapt as technology and solutions evolve.

Focusing on reducing the carbon footprint created by heavy road vehicles and rail freight, the policy’s first step will include two-year trial to give extra mass zero emission heavy vehicles access to the state road network.

According to the NSW Government, this will allow the industry to invest in the technology without sacrificing the payloads that underpin the freight business.

“This is an important step towards achieving net zero, while working constructively with industries,” said NSW Premier Chris Minns.

“Reducing freight emissions requires a genuine partnership between government and industry.

“We’re always going to need a freight sector to get the essentials from A to B, so we need to make sure our freight industry is sustainable over the long-term.”

An online comparison tool has also been developed to support the transition, providing a free resource for the freight industry to source information on the cost and environmental benefits of low and zero emission vehicles.

Minister for Transport, Jo Haylen, said many freight operators are already investing in low emission technologies.

“This policy means that the government is able to support industry to continue to invest in new and emerging technologies and reflects our joint commitment to reduce freight emissions,” she said.

“This isn’t just about cutting emissions and protecting our environment, it’s also about strengthening our economy through driving innovation, creating jobs and increasing competitiveness.”

The Government claimed freight accounts for 25 per cent of total transport greenhouse gases in NSW, with demand projected to rise by 34 per cent by 2061.

Last week it was announced that wider trucks would be permitted on Australian roads providing certain conditions were met.

It is expected that this will help to encourage the introduction of battery electric and hydrogen fuel cell vehicles.

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