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Volvo Group North America Wins South Coast AQMD Clean Air Award for Innovative Clean Air Technology

Volvo Group North America (VGNA) recently won a prestigious award for its clean air technology efforts related to the Volvo LIGHTS project. The South Coast Air Quality Management District (AQMD) presented the 32nd Clean Air Award to the Volvo Group for its extraordinary contribution to the development of innovative technologies designed to reduce emissions.

“Volvo Group North America is very pleased to be recognized for its clean air technology efforts by South Coast AQMD,” said Keith Brandis, Volvo Group vice president of partnerships and systems solutions. “The Volvo LIGHTS (Low Impact Green Heavy Transport Solutions) project has been successful as a result of the multiple partners who represent each of the critical areas for battery electric vehicle deployment and acceptance. We appreciate South Coast AQMD supporting Volvo in this initiative, as well as the Switch-On and Joint Electric Truck Scaling Initiative (JETSI).”

Volvo LIGHTS is a collaboration among 14 public and private partners working toward the common goal of successfully introducing battery-electric trucks and equipment into the market at scale. Led by the Volvo Group and South Coast AQMD, NFI Industries, Dependable Supply Chain Services, TEC Equipment, Greenlots, Port of Long Beach, Port of Los Angeles, Southern California Edison, CALSTART, the University of California, Riverside CE-CERT, Reach Out, Rio Hondo College and San Bernardino Valley College are also stakeholders.

The Volvo LIGHTS project was made possible by a $48 million award to South Coast AQMD from the California Air Resources Board (CARB) as part of California Climate Investments (CCI), a statewide initiative that puts billions of Cap-and-Trade dollars toward reducing greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions, strengthening the economy and improving public health and the environment. South Coast AQMD contributed $4 million from the Clean Fuels Fund and awarded the Volvo Group a $45.6 million contract to design and implement the LIGHTS project. Volvo and its partners have promised no less than $45.7 million in matching contributions to increase the total project value to more than $91 million for South Coast AQMD to administer.

“We appreciate and commend South Coast AQMD’s leadership in advancing the clean air agenda in our region, and we look forward to continuing our partnership with them on innovative projects that will positively impact the air quality,” said Aravind Kailas, Volvo Group advanced technology policy director.

The Volvo VNR Electric is Volvo Trucks’ first Class 8 battery-electric vehicle and the truck involved in the LIGHTS project. Equipped with a driveline rated at 455 hp, generating up to 4,051 lb.-ft. of torque, the Volvo VNR Electric is manufactured at Volvo’s New River Valley assembly facility, based in Dublin, Virginia. The Volvo VNR Electric is also spec’d with a 264-kWh battery capacity and can support an operating range up to 150 miles based on the vehicle’s configuration.

Along with the LIGHTS project, the Volvo Group is also participating in the Switch-On and Joint Electric Truck Scaling Initiative (JETSI). The Switch-On project builds on the success of the Volvo LIGHTS program through the deployment of 100 battery-electric regional haul and drayage trucks in California by Volvo LIGHTS’ partner NFI. The project is on track to significantly reduce emissions along the Interstate-710 corridor in southern California, as well as improve air quality for those communities impacted.

Aravind Kailas, advanced technology policy director, with the award.

Kailas and Brandis accepted the Clean Air Award during a virtual event Dec. 3, 2021.

For more information the Volvo LIGHTS project, please visit