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Dole invests in more electric cargo equipment at Port of San Diego

Dole – EV Press Conference Final Banner

Latest replacement vehicles further reduce nitrogen oxides emissions at terminal yard operations

CHARLOTTE, NC – At a ceremony today at its terminal yard at the Port of San Diego, CA, Dole Food Company BB #:124463 announced a $1.5 million dollar electrification project at its West Coast port operation. This project has funded five new electric utility tractor rigs (UTRS) to add to Dole’s growing electric fleet of container transfer trucks.

These new terminal UTRs—adding to two existing electric vehicles currently in operation at the facility—are funded in part via the Clean Off-Road Equipment Voucher Incentive Project (CORE) administered by the California Air Resources Board (CARB). CORE is intended to accelerate deployment of advanced technology in the off-road sector by providing a streamlined way for fleets to access funding that helps offset the incremental costs of such technology.

Dole will retire four diesel-powered UTRs with these new battery electric units, resulting in a substantial emission reduction.

As per the research submitted in Dole’s application to CORE, each new UTR will avoid 0.3194 tons NOx/year over the 10-year life for a total reduction of 3.194 tons NOx per UTR and a cumulative project emissions reduction of 12.776 tons NOx over the 10 years.

With these changes, Dole now affirms 35 percent of its port transfer UTRs are electric, well on its way to meet the company goal to be 100 percent electrified in its UTR fleet by 2030.

“Dole is strongly committed to being a change agent in combating climate disruption and adding electric vehicles to our operations is one area we can make positive emissions impacts,” stated Nelson Montoya, President of Dole Fresh Fruit North America. “Combining Dole funding with these CORE grants exemplifies that private business can take meaningful initiatives to pursue sustainability.”

Dole’s electrification efforts also align with the Port’s Maritime Clean Air Strategy (MCAS), which helps identify future projects and initiatives to improve health through cleaner air while also supporting efficient and modern maritime operations.

“In developing the MCAS, we recognized that regional collaboration would be critical in making major air quality and public health improvements on our waterfront and in our neighboring communities,” said Chairman Dan Malcolm, Port of San Diego Board of Port Commissioners. “Dole, a longtime and valued Port tenant, has been an early adopter and supporter of electrification technologies. It’s wonderful to see they’re able to continue to take advantage of available state funding to help meet both their environmental goals and ours.”

Nora Vargas, Vice Chair, San Diego County added, “I am proud that the California Air Resources Board provided this important funding and I applaud Dole for its early action in replacing diesel-powered utility tractor rigs with zero-emission electric models. This is the kind of smart investment by the state that helps fight climate change and cleans up the air that families breathe in this Portside community. Only through these kinds of partnerships will we be able to tackle the climate crisis and build healthier and stronger communities.”

In alignment with The Dole Way sustainability framework, Dole has demonstrated its continuing commitment to the local environment and surrounding communities of the port by the following:

• Participation in demonstration grants resulting in this continual upgrading of terminal trucks to tier 4 engines replacing diesel equipment several years ahead of regulations
• Replacement of five diesel trucks with five electric terminal models
• Replacement of two forklifts with electric models
• Compliance for shore powering Dole vessels several years ahead of deadlines

Dole strives to exceed compliance plug in requirements. The company will be announcing a partnership with San Diego Gas & Electric to build a new fleet charging station at Dole’s facility at the Port’s Tenth Avenue Marine Terminal as it moves further to electrify all 20 UTRs in its fleet.

About Dole Food Company

Dole Food Company, part of Dole plc, is one of the world’s largest producers and marketers of high-quality fresh fruit and fresh vegetables. Dole is an industry leader in many of the products it sells, as well as in nutrition education. For more information, please visit

About The Dole Way

In April 2020, Dole Food Company announced The Dole Way, introducing its sustainability commitment and framework around People, Nature and Food. For more information, please visit