WASHINGTON - Tuesday, January 01, 2013 - On Tuesday night, Congress reached an agreement on a fiscal cliff package that maintains parity between the tax rates on dividends and capital gains.
Surfing, Palm trees, Hula dancing—and electric drive? Hawaii is very quickly and widely adopting the electric drive lifestyle, garnering very impressive sales figures on hybrid, plug-in hybrid, and battery electric cars for 2012.
In just five months, sales of hybrid and electric cars in Hawaii are on pace to exceed the total number of vehicles sold in 2011. According to the Hawaii Automobile Dealers Association, Hawaiian drivers bought 1,128 hybrid and electric vehicles, which is almost 70 percent of the total 1,649 vehicles sold in all of 2011. The success in hybrid and electric vehicles may be due to the Aloha State’s higher than average gas prices and less extensive road networks. You can get anywhere in Hawaii with an EV. EVs are also highly attractive because EV drivers are able to park for free in many Hawaiian cities and towns as well as have access to its High-Occupancy Vehicle (HOV) lanes with only one occupant in the car.
It is projected that Hawaii will have more than 14,000 vehicles that plug into the grid by 2017. Hybrid vehicles (that do not plug into the grid) sales reached a record 1,749 in 2006, but with the sales trend that Hawaii is seeing along with the increased introduction of EV models, it is likely that EV sales and the development of charging infrastructure will continue to rapidly increase.
Hawaii isn’t the only state with incentives for driving a hybrid or electric vehicle. Use our Resource Locator to find out what incentives are available in your state. And if you have been on a trip to Hawaii recently, share your EV photos and feedback with us at www.facebook.com/goelectricdrive.
Published in Vehicles
Many employers often offer incentives or hold contests for staff members who excel at their work—so why not reward them for how they get to work?
Google’s Sydney, Australia office has been challenging their staff to travel to work in the greenest possible way. In return, the staff will earn points or Google Green Credits (GoCred) and gain access to a pair of Mitsubishi i – battery electric vehicles from Mitsubishi Motors – owned by the company. Google software engineer Sam Thorogood developed a points-tracking system to track how the local staff of 600 got to work. Through the points system, Google wants to ensure that everyone can get a chance to book a car and be rewarded for being environmentally friendly commuters.
Beyond electric vehicles, modes of transport that the staff has opted for include walking and biking. So far, the program has worked very well. In fact, both electric cars are usually used or booked for more than 80% of any given week and have used a combined total of about 22,370 miles. Thanks to the constant use of the Mitsubishi i, the staff has saved an estimate of six tons of carbon emissions since their introduction, one and a half years ago.
With the pair of Mitsubishis always being booked, it truly shows how rewarding it is to keep the environment in mind and to drive electric.
Google’s booking system is just one out of many incentives for green travel – in this case limited to Google employees. Check out our Resource Locator to find other incentives near you. Check out our GoElectricDrive Virtual Showroom to learn more about the Mitsubishi i, and visit i.mitsubishicars.com
MIT’s Center for Transportation and Logistics researchers have conducted a new study on a fleet of electric-drive delivery trucks. The results show that using electric vehicles on a large scale are not only environmentally friendly, but also provide economic benefits to your business!
A company looking to buy an electric-powered delivery truck might experience some sticker shock—such vehicles cost around $150,000, compared to $50,000 for an internal-combustion engine truck. But keep in mind this is a purchase that should pay for itself in the long run!
“There has to be a good business case if there is going to be more adoption of electric vehicles,” says Jarrod Goentzel, director of the Renewable Energy Delivery Project at CTL and one of the co-authors of the new study. “We think it’s already a viable economic model, and as battery costs continue to drop, the case will only get better.”
Compared to the conventional diesel-engine deliver trucks, electric vehicles can lower operational costs of a fleet used to make daily deliveries in urban areas anywhere from 9% to 12%. The researchers used data from ISO New England, a nonprofit organization that runs New England’s electric power grid, and Staples, an international supplier of office products. The researchers used the data to model the costs of a delivery truck fleet with 250 vehicles. Three types of motors: diesel engines, hybrid gas-electric engines, and purely electric engines were analyzed fleet use in the study. Purely electric trucks achieved 0.8 kWh per mile, they hybrid trucks averaged 11.56 miles per gallon, and diesel engines averaged 10.14 miles per gallon.
The researchers also examined electric truck fleets as part of a vehicle-to-grid (V2G) system that would allow their batteries to be plugged into the electric grid for 12 hours overnight as an additional resource for providing electricity to consumers. In this scenario, the truck owners would be paid by utility firms for the electricity they provide. The results showed that companies could earn about $900 to $1,400 per truck per year in vehicle-to-grid revenues, translating to a drop in operating costs ranging from 7% to 11%. To put it simply, this means the electric truck will help save money in terms of fuel and maintenance, since they induce less damage on brakes.
To sum it up: operational costs per mile (the basic metric used by fleet managers) would drop from 75 cents to 68 cents per mile when V2G-enabled electric trucks are used instead of gas-engine trucks. I guess you could say using electric trucks for delivery fleets makes ‘cents’!
Published in Fleets
In an interview with Consumer Reports, during the Electric Vehicle Symposium earlier this month, Brian Wynne, President of the EDTA, sat down to talk about electric vehicles and energy security.
Consumers are often concerned about electricity shortages due to the use of public chargers during the day. Wynne addresses this concern with the common electricity bill, explaining that since the bill is based on capital (investment of utilities) amortized over a great length of time, we need a load growth. By retiring coal plants and supporting brand-new combined-cycle natural gas plants, a load growth can be achieved.
Electric car supporters often note the U.S. consumer’s tendency to drive less than 40 miles a day and the perk of utilizing off-peak electricity generation. So is it necessary to have all these fast and public charging solutions we’re seeing at EVS? Wynne stresses the need to understand and keep track of public infrastructure and public investment law. He doesn’t think charging stations will ultimately go unused as our needs will change as electric vehicle use increases.
Wynne understands many Americans’ needs to drive over 100 miles a day and urges consumers to not only consider the electric car’s $1 a gallon equivalent, but to look at the whole picture. Although constraints with batteries may persist over time, ownership of vehicles won’t. Ownership may simply shift to having the access to a vehicle that is appropriate for the driving needed for the day.
Finally, are 60% of Chevrolet Volts and Nissan Leafs sold in California simply because of their environmental mandate? If so, what reason would consumers from other states have to buy electric cars? Wynne notes that California has the largest automotive market, which would explain automakers’ focus. The only way to address other states is nationwide education. Through education, the public will learn that not only is electric vehicle technology beneficial environmentally and economically, it’s a whole lot of fun to drive.
Read the interview on Consumer Reports.
Learn more about the new driving experience that EVs bring.
Published in Grid Electricity
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