San Diego Gas & Electric
Israel Delgado Vallejo, Vice President of the Northwest Region of CANACAR (National Chamber of Freight Transport) José Saul de los Santos Gómez, Planning Coordinator at the Secretariat of Economy, and Innovation of the Government of the State of Baja California. Juan Baez, President Bali Express Todd Gloria, Mayor, City of San Diego Caroline Winn, CEO San Diego Gas & Electric

First heavy-duty electric freight truck makes historic crossing of U.S.-Mexico border

April 16, 2024
San Diego Gas & Electric and Bali Express forge path to zero emissions freight transport.

San Diego Gas & Electric and Bali Express recently announced the historic crossing of a Class 8 heavy-duty electric freight truck from the U.S. into Mexico. The semi-truck made its maiden voyage into Mexico, marking a milestone as the binational region moves toward a net-zero future.

These dedicated trucks will utilize recently built charging infrastructure installed by SDG&E to provide charging options for medium- to heavy-duty electric freight trucks crossing the U.S.-Mexico border.

"Today marks a historic milestone in our journey toward reducing emissions and paving the way for a cleaner energy future," said Caroline Winn, CEO at SDG&E. "This new electric corridor is a great example of how collaboration can create new and innovative ways to rethink how to propel our transportation systems towards electrification."

Juan Baez, owner of the San Diego-based Bali Express, emphasized the importance of working together to achieve sustainability goals.

"We are thrilled to be working with SDG&E in this historic endeavor," Baez said. "By adding electric freight trucks, we are not only reducing our carbon footprint but also leading the way towards a more sustainable future for freight transportation on both sides of the border. We're proud to be a leader in this transition and excited about the first-ever crossing."

See also: GHG3 reality worries fleets

The chargers were partly funded by a $200,000 grant through the California Energy Commission's Clean Transportation Program, which has provided more than $1 billion to alternative fuel and vehicle technology projects designed to deliver health, environmental, and economic benefits to communities.

"To accommodate the transition to zero-emission trucks on both sides of the border, it's critically important we have the necessary infrastructure," said California Energy Commissioner Patty Monahan. "The California Energy Commission is helping fund projects across the state to build a better and more equitable charging infrastructure system for both cars and trucks."

San Diego County Board of Supervisors Chairwoman Nora Vargas—who is Governor Newsom's appointee to the California Air Resources Board—emphasized the importance of reducing emissions in border communities while also growing their economies.

"As a fronteriza, I am thrilled that we're moving forward with the use of bold and innovative energy technology that helps reduce air pollution, offers sustainable cross-border freight transportation, and strengthens our binational and interdependent economy," Vargas said. "I know the binational region firsthand, and this is a great example of the kind of public-private partnerships that can improve air quality and promote economic prosperity for the binational region."

The electric charging infrastructure is a part of SDG&E's Power Your Drive for Fleets program. The program connects fleet operators with resources and financial incentives to design and install charging infrastructure for medium- and heavy-duty fleets.

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