Opportunities for deploying electric vehicles (EVs) and plug-in hybrid electric vehicles (PHEVs) were highlighted at the New York Power Authority's (NYPA's) White Plains office, where representatives of electric utilities, automakers, charging equipment manufacturers, environmentalists, local governments and vehicle fleet operators joined together at an EV workshop and “ride-and-drive” event in December.
Participants heard from speakers on public-private partnerships for encouraging purchases of the new generation of PHEVs and on measures for establishing the necessary electric-charging stations. The NYPA's downstate government electricity customers and other interested parties received technical information on the utilization of the advanced technology vehicles, including several that were showcased at the ride-and-drive portion of the event. Among the vehicles were the GM Volt, plug-in Toyota Prius, Mitsubishi i MiEV and the Transit Connect Electric, an electric commercial van manufactured by Ford Motor Co. in partnership with Azure Dynamics Corp., an electric-drive vehicle innovator.
“Electrified vehicles, hybrids and other alternative-fueled vehicles are essential for enhancing our energy security, the environment and economy,” said Richard M. Kessel, NYPA president and CEO. “The innovative technologies of these vehicles are synonymous with significant benefits for reducing oil dependence, combating heat-trapping greenhouse-gas emissions and developing new clean energy jobs, which are imperative for invigorating New York's economy.
“The Power Authority and other key public- and private-sector organizations and not-for-profits are working to advance these goals, for which Governor Paterson has provided strong leadership and that are part of Governor-elect Cuomo's comprehensive agenda for a cleaner, greener New York,” added Kessel.
NYPA held the event in conjunction with NYCLHVCC — the regional chapter of the U.S. Department of Energy's (DOE's) Clean Cities program. NYPA and other participating organizations at the workshop are on the board of directors of the Clean Communities organization, which is dedicated to accelerating the introduction in the region of PHEVs and other alternative-fueled vehicles.
“Consumer information, outreach and education are vitally important for expanding the use of electric vehicles, plug-in hybrid electrics and other alternative-fueled vehicles,” said Mike Scarpino, Clean Cities regional project manager at the DOE's National Energy Technology Laboratory. “That's what symposiums like today's event are all about in bringing key stakeholders together to raise awareness for putting more of these vehicles on the road since no one entity can do it alone. The transportation sector accounts for about one-third of greenhouse-gas emissions, underscoring the environmental benefits of zero- and low-emission vehicles and their crucial role as part of the solution to the global warming problem.”
Over the last two decades, NYPA has spearheaded an electric transportation program that has become one of the nation's most ambitious for placing into service EVs and PHEVs. To date, NYPA has helped put on the road more than 1,200 EVs, serving its own vehicle fleet and those of its customers.
Other parties that participate in the program include community-owned electric systems around the state include municipal electric systems and rural cooperatives whose residential and business customers benefit from NYPA's low-cost power.
Learn more at www.nypa.gov.