Members of ECOSS outreach and project management teams carpooled to Tacoma to attend the Green Transporation Summit and Expo’s Ride & Drive program earlier this month. GTSE is a 3-day event that focuses on sustainable transportation and provides information sessions about funding opportunities at the local, state, and national levels. This is particularly relevant in light of Seattle’s Transportation Electrification Blueprint and goal of 90% of trips being zero-emission (walking, bikes, public transportation, or electric vehicles) by 2030. 

The ECOSS team checks out the battery under the hood of an electric semi-truck.

The expo showcased a variety of EV technologies and 100% electric/zero-emission vehicles: from food trucks to charter buses and semi-trucks. These vehicles utilized existing EV technologies and showed the potential for innovative new technologies. The fully electric semi-truck is only usable for local short-route deliveries since the charge station infrastructure and battery life are not yet optimized for long-haul drives. Another vehicle at the expo was an electric charter bus, which is currently utilized on the Seattle-Portland FlixBus route. The ECOSS team got to ride in the semi-truck and charter bus, and also had the opportunity to test drive an electric food truck and a forklift.

Aside from the zero-emissions that EVs promise us, I was thoroughly surprised and excited about the lack of noise pollution they also bring. Living on a main street, minutes away from the airport under their flight path, I don’t get the privilege of a peaceful, silent home to relax and heal in, and neither do most of our communities in the Duwamish and Rainier valleys. 

Miranda Perez, ECOSS Clean Energy Project Manager

ECOSS is currently working to bring awareness and access to funding opportunities for the communities that we work with. The electrification of transportation is an exciting opportunity to reduce vehicle emissions, but it is imperative that all communities have equal access to these technologies. ECOSS hopes to inspire community-led projects that will satisfy not only needs, but desires and aspirations as well. 

Special thanks to Angela Song, the Transportation Electrification Portfolio Manager at Seattle City Light, for sharing this opportunity at GTSE with ECOSS.