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Eight state alliance releases plan to put 3.3 million zero emission vehicles on U.S. roads

ODOT News

May 29, 2014
 
For more information, contact Ashley Horvat, Oregon Chief EV Officer, (503) 385-3293
 
SALEM – Eight states spanning east to west today announced the creation of a collaborative “Multi-State ZEV Action Plan” that will guide efforts to put 3.3 million zero emission vehicles on the roads by 2025. Oregon, California, Connecticut, Maryland, Massachusetts, New York, Rhode Island and Vermont created the first promised milestone for the bi-coastal collaboration aimed at paving the way for the cleanest cars in the nation – ZEVs. The plan focuses on infrastructure, policies, standards and other components critical for the success of a growing market.
 
“Putting 3.3 million ZEVs on the roads of Oregon and our partner states in the next 11 years requires both collaboration and action,” said Governor John Kitzhaber. “We’ve taken significant steps in Oregon to accelerate EV adoption, including public-private initiatives like the West Coast Electric Highway and the designation of a statewide EV officer. This action plan gives Oregon and other partner states specific next steps to not only build on and expand current efforts, but to see them through.”
 
The governors of the eight states began this latest collaboration with the signing of a Memorandum of Understanding on October 24, 2013. The ultimate goal is to reduce greenhouse gas and smog-causing emissions by transforming the transportation sector over the next 11 years. Since the MOU signing, state regulators, the auto industry and infrastructure developers and other stakeholders have shared information and best practices to help move the effort forward.
 
Plan covers wide range of vehicles
ZEVs include plug-in hybrids, battery electric and hydrogen-powered fuel cell electric vehicles. To date, manufacturers have rolled out more than 2 dozen models in these categories and they have developed a solid foothold in the automobile market. As of April 2014 there are nearly 200,000 nationwide. Sales have doubled over the past year alone, with more than half of those sales occurring in the MOU signatory states.
 
Solid, achievable action
The Multi-State ZEV Action Plan provides an overview of the current state of the market. It also provides an agenda to accelerate the development of that market.
 
“The Action Plan released today is a product of eight months of in-depth analysis and collaboration between our task force members, all of the major automakers, utilities, charging manufacturers, auto dealers associations, environmental groups, the national labs, federal agencies, and many more representative industries,” said State of Oregon Chief EV Officer Ashley Horvat. “I am confident given the level of rigor applied in the Plan’s creation and the momentum coming from a diverse and large swath of actors, public-private strategic partnerships will emerge that can propel the industry towards a future with smart, clean, economic and efficient mobility options.”
 
The plan has 11 key actions that fall into three major categories:
 
I.              Build the market
1.    Promote the availability and effective marketing of ZEVs
2.    Encourage private fleets to acquire ZEVs
3.    Promote planning and investment in ZEV infrastructure
4.    Increase the number of ZEVs in government vehicle fleets
II.            Provide consistent codes, standards and tracking
5.    Remove barriers to charging station installation
6.    Provide clear and uniform signage
7.    Track and report progress toward the 3.3 million vehicle goal
III.           Improve the experience
8.    Promote workplace charging
9.    Provide consumer incentives for the purchase of ZEVs
10.  Remove barriers to retail sale of electricity as vehicle fuel
11.  Promote access and compatibility for charging networks
 
The ZEV action plan also includes steps individual states can take to carry out the plan, as well as examples of successful state programs they can learn from and/or replicate.
 
Environmental and economic health
Affordable, readily available ultra-clean vehicles are critical to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and lessen the impact of climate change, because the transportation sector is one of the nation’s major sources of greenhouse gases.
 
Creating a growing market for ZEVs also provides a range of economic benefits. Electricity is widely available and generally costs less than gasoline or diesel on a per-mile basis. Maintenance costs for a ZEV are also lower over the life of the vehicle. The push for clean vehicles has also brought investment in new business and new jobs which will help create a more sustainable economy.
 
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See the full Multi-State ZEV Action Plan online. The 8-State Memorandum of Understanding (PDF) is also available online.