As a recognized trailblazer and changemaker, the City of Berkeley didn’t need a New Year's Day to begin a new chapter. Nor is it waiting until 2035 to transition to zero-emission off-road equipment and vehicles, the year the State of California Executive Order N-79-20 has set for compliance. On December 19, 2023, the city took possession of a Monarch MK-V electric tractor. Berkeley is the first municipality in California, and the entire nation to purchase a Monarch Tractor.
The delivery day marks a win for the City of Berkeley, Berkeley residents, the state of California, and Monarch.
Health, Safety & Savings
The California Air Resources Board reports that a new, gas-powered mower running for one hour produces similar emissions to the average passenger car driving for 100 miles. The electrification of grounds maintenance equipment would improve local and regional air quality, enabling Berkeley residents to enjoy the public health and environmental benefits of zero-emission EV equipment.
For the City of Berkeley, deploying an MK-V for grounds maintenance will improve local air quality and support lower operating expenses by eliminating diesel costs and significantly reducing the maintenance costs associated with a combustion engine.
We (City of Berkeley) have been slowly but surely purchasing electrical equipment for our operations. The MK-V is going to be the largest piece.
Melissa Marizette-Green, Senior Landscape Gardener Supervisor, City of Berkeley Parks Division
In a move that maximized return on investment even more, The City of Berkeley took advantage of California’s Clean Off-Road Equipment (CORE) a voucher-based EV financial incentive. CORE allowed the City of Berkeley to purchase the MK-V for a minimum of 65% off the retail price rendering it cost neutral when compared to a similar-sized diesel tractor.
“We had seen another electric tractor here in California, but it didn’t meet our needs,” Marizette-Green says. “That tractor was not powerful enough to use the attachments that we use in our operations and the Monarch was everything we needed.”
Grounds for Growth
Between the expense of diesel, maintenance, and associated healthcare costs that come with air pollution from diesel emissions, municipalities have a lot to gain by electrifying their equipment. With a proven runtime of up to 14 hours, swappable battery technology, and compatibility with current implements, Monarch is overcoming many of the voiced concerns over electrification.
A lot of municipalities across the U.S. may be looking for electric solutions for their grounds maintenance. Monarch can meet that need from a safety perspective and zero-emissions perspective, making those municipalities more profitable, safer, and cleaner for their everyday operations.
David Kahn, Sales Demo Director, Monarch Tractor
Monarch Tractor is excited to have a customer relationship with the City of Berkeley and looks forward to supporting the city and its residents with safer, healthier, and financially efficient grounds maintenance operations.