In 2021, the Office of Sustainability, in partnership with the Department of Fleet Services, released Philadelphia’s Municipal Clean Fleet Plan. The plan provides the city with a strategy to replace over 5,000 municipal vehicles with clean and electric vehicles. Replacing the city’s fleet with electric and clean alternatives is part of the city’s goal to reach carbon neutrality by 2050. In 2021, the city’s fleet represented about 13% of the municipal government’s carbon footprint.
Electrification and charging infrastructure highlights include:
- The number of electric vehicles has dramatically increased from 34 plug-in EVs in 2020 to 248 plug-in EVs in active service today.
- The number of municipally owned EV chargers has more than doubled since 2020 with 109 plugs currently available throughout the city.
- The City established a contract with the charging provider EVgo to allow employees to fast charge their work vehicles.
- Managing Director Tumar Alexander issued Managing Director’s Directive #69 on the Clean Fleet Policy to establish the clean fleet hierarchy and the Clean Fleet Committee.
The Clean Fleet Committee has met quarterly to discuss the successes and obstacles of switching to EVs. The committee is led by staff from the Office of Sustainability and the Department of Fleet Services, with representatives from many other departments that use EVs. The committee has worked with Sustainability and Fleet Services to oversee infrastructure issues, recommend best practices for EV use, and distribute information on local, state, and federal EV incentives.
The city’s first Level 3 Networked EV charger will be installed in early 2024. This project was funded by the Office of the Chief Administrative Officer’s Operations Transformation Fund.
As the Number of City EVs Grows, the Number of EV chargers Must Grow
To help plan for future infrastructure needs, the Office of Sustainability is working with consultants at ICF to understand the number and types of chargers the city needs. Consultants use information on the number and brand of EVs to help the city understand where additional chargers will be most crucial. Upgrades to the electrical infrastructure at city facilities may be needed as the EV chargers add an additional electrical demand to the building.
Philadelphia will be eligible to receive direct payments from the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) for the purchase of EVs and chargers in fiscal year 2023 under new IRA policies. These direct payments can be used to grow the EV fleet and charging infrastructure. In addition to funds for direct purchase of EVs in the IRA, the BIL created multiple grant programs to develop a network of charging infrastructure throughout the country. The City hopes to utilize these opportunities to expand public EV charging options throughout Philadelphia.
After 2030, the city aims to solely procure clean and electric vehicles going forward.