The Wilmington City Council has approved the purchase of an electric trash packer vehicle.
You can watch the video about the discussion here.
Wilmington, North Carolina 28401
Dear Mayor and Councilmembers:
Please find attached the resolution and companion ordinance for accepting the 2020 North Carolina
Department of Environmental Quality Diesel Emissions Reduction Grant. City Council approved the
application for this grant on October 20, 2020. The grant aims to reduce diesel emissions through the
Federal Mobile Source Diesel Emissions Reduction Grants (DERA) program. Grant funds are
intended to mitigate nitrogen oxides, particulate matter, and greenhouse gas emissions in the state. The
North Carolina Division of Air Quality (NCDAQ) administers the grant through the DERA program.
The grant awards a 45% purchase cost reimbursement for the eligible vehicle and charging station
purchase. The NC program awarded 2020 DERA funds totaling $616,835 statewide, of which the City
of Wilmington has been awarded $270,586, indicating strong support for the proposed City project.
The program is designed to achieve significant reductions in diesel emissions. In fact, the proposed
all-electric recycling & trash vehicle will have no emissions, low operating noise and will eliminate any
use of diesel fuel, motor oil, coolant fluids, DEF fluid, and potentially hydraulic fluid. The electric
vehicle is expected to reduce CO2 emissions by 100 tons per year over the replaced diesel packer. The
grant will reimburse government agencies to replace diesel-powered vehicles with low or zero-emission
vehicles with up to 45% of the eligible project costs and require a 55% public funds match.
The 336 kWh battery option will provide up to a 120-mile operating range, which exceeds all current
single day RTS routes. The 50kWh charger will enable the vehicle to be fully charged (even if the
battery is fully discharged) in about 7 hours. This will allow "off-peak" charging rates (~$.09/kW) and
realize further decreased operating costs.
Our proposed project includes one (1) fully electric rear-load trash truck, the associated charging
equipment, and operator, mechanic, and fleet staff training. The 336 kWh Electric Trash Truck's
purchase cost is $573,321, and the 50 kWh charging station is $27,982. These amounts place the grant
project application at $601,303, with DERA funding $270,586 and the City capital funding match of
$330,717. $36,667 is the cost of the required electrical upgrades at the City Operations Complex for
the charging infrastructure. These improvements cannot be included in the grant project
reimbursement but will allow for possible future charge stations. A typical replacement diesel packer
vehicle would be approximately $183,000. Current paid-in replacement funds in the Fleet fund total
$154,812 for a vehicle nearing the end of its replacement schedule.
The following cost and funding summary includes quotes from The Lion Electric Co., an industry
leader in medium and heavy-duty electric vehicles and experienced partner in municipal Electric
Vehicle (EV) conversions:
1 2021 Fully electric rear-loading trash packer truck w 336 kWh battery system - $573,321
1 50 kWh smart charging station - $27,982
1 Electrical upgrade, City Operations Complex - $36,667 (non grant-project expense)
Total = $637,970
RTS Fund Balance - $212,572
Fleet Replacement Fund - $154,812
DERA Grant - $270,586
Total = $637,970
This grant is a reimbursement program where award recipients will be required to demonstrate payment
for the project before receiving awarded funds. Before reimbursement, awardees must:
• Provide a signed payment request, on applicant letterhead, for the amount to be reimbursed;
• Submit invoices and proofs of payment for necessary expenses associated with the project;
• Submit photos and a certificate of destruction for each replaced vehicle, engine, or equipment
documenting that the replaced vehicle, engine, or equipment has been rendered inoperable;
• Submit photographic documentation of the VINs and engine serial numbers for the original replaced
vehicles, engines, or equipment;
• Submit delivery or registration documents showing the VINs and engine serial numbers for the new
vehicles, engines, or equipment; and
• Confirm that the project is completed, and the vehicle(s) and equipment are operating satisfactorily
for the intended purpose.
For all-electric vehicle replacements and repower projects where charging infrastructure is part of the
project, awardees must submit documentation for accompanying EV charging infrastructure:
• Submit a photo of the EV charging infrastructure, including the charging station and any other
associated auxiliary equipment; and
• Certify that the EV charging infrastructure is fully operational.
Recycling and Trash Services currently has a diesel vehicle eligible for replacement funding under the
grant requirements. Specifically, these vehicles were manufactured before 2009. If awarded, this grant
will be used to replace one (1) diesel-powered trash truck with a new, state-of-the-art electric vehicle.
The replacement will achieve both strategic and operational goals:
•Reduce carbon emissions for these heavy use vehicles by up to 66% (considering electricity
•Reduce operational energy consumption and expenses
•Make the City of Wilmington one of the first NC municipalities to deploy zero-emission refuse
•Benefit the City's trash truck fleet with an asset valued at $600,000 at a capital expense of $331,000 to
If the grant acceptance is approved, the new vehicle could be delivered sometime 4th quarter of 2021 to
mid-2022. The grant requires that the new vehicle remains in service for five (5) years from
The Recycling & Trash Services Division is pleased to present this opportunity for the City of
Wilmington to become a leader in implementing zero-emission trash vehicles. This grant award is
undoubtedly a significant step forward in response to the recently completed Ad Hoc Clean Energy
Policy Task Force Report dated January 19, 2021. We look forward to any opportunity to help the City
achieve its waste reduction & sustainability goals and benefit the entire community.
Passage of the attached Resolution and Ordinance is recommended.
Sterling B. Cheatham,