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Orange EV truck

JCW to use electric vehicles at expanded plant

Johnson County’s Tomahawk Creek Wastewater Treatment Facility (TCWTF), which is currently under construction in a multi-year expansion project, will add more electric vehicles to its fleet for cleaner, more cost-effective transportation.

The county received $110,000 through the U.S. Department of Energy grant project, “Electrifying Terminal Trucks in Unincentivized Markets,” toward the purchase of an Orange EV T-Series electric terminal truck, standard duty. The project is led by Metropolitan Energy Center (MEC), a local nonprofit organization with a 37-year history of transforming energy use in the building and transportation sectors in the Kansas City region and beyond. A key goal of the project is to demonstrate the feasibility of 100% electric terminal trucks in the heartland. 

The truck at TCWTF is one of four all-electric terminal trucks deployed in the region through the project. It will be put into service in early 2021 and used to move sludge trailers onsite. While this will be the only vehicle of its kind at the facility, there are plans to purchase additional electric vehicles for use solely at TCWTF. 

“Currently, electric utility vehicles are being used instead of traditional pick-ups for on-site work,” said Chris Butler, the county’s director of Fleet Services. “Other planned purchases for the site are electric vehicle (EV) sedans or SUVs to be used as administrative vehicles.”

“The all-electric yard truck is different than any other hybrids in our fleet because it is designed for a specific work task,” said Kenny Kellison, director of Operations and Maintenance with Johnson County Wastewater. “All others have been general purpose vehicles, mainly used for transportation.”

The replacement schedule for this vehicle is 15 years.

Associated savings will be realized by not transporting fuel for the yard truck, and the grant makes the cost of the electric unit (purchased for $258,950) competitive with a diesel fuel unit.

“This is a great opportunity with the grant being available,” Kellison said. “Long term, not transporting fuel, will be an excellent time saver and a huge safety improvement.” 

Through the MEC grant project, Orange EV also obtained a demonstration truck, the same model as TCWTF’s, to provide potential customers across the U.S. the opportunity to use the truck at their unique work site free of charge, excluding possible shipping fees. To learn more about this project or to request the demo truck for your work site, please contact Emily Wolfe at MEC.

This material is based upon work supported by the U.S. Department of Energy’s Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy (EERE) under the Award Number DE-EE0008887.


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