Sierra Club

 

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:

July 7, 2011

Contact: Maggie Kao (Sierra Club) 202-675-2384


Broad Coalition of Industry, Local Government and Public Interest Groups Support

Electric Vehicles and Freedom from Oil

 

Today more than 180 local and national companies and organizations joined together to show their support for plug-in electric vehicle (EV) policies and infrastructure –demonstrating the groundswell of support in all regions of the country for EV innovation and the types of policies needed to make it successful.

In a joint statement, the groups called for strong programs on the national, state and local levels to put more plug-in electric vehicles on the road and create more American jobs, less pollution and greater energy security. 

"I’m proud to be working for a company committed to supporting oil independence and the emerging EV supply chain," said Brian Patnoe, Vice President of Fleet Sales at CODA Automotive, a Los Angeles, CA-based electric vehicle and battery company that signed the statement. "As a former Marine, it’s also exciting for me to see successful business opportunities that support a prosperous oil-free future -from CODA’s own parts manufacturers and assembly line workers to electrical workers installing EV chargers and the customers purchasing a whole new type of vehicle.” 

“Electrifying the cars, trucks and buses we use every day is one of the smartest economic moves our country can make to reduce its dependence on oil,” stated Chris Cowger, president, Ener1, Inc., an Indiana-based company at the forefront of performance and efficiency-harnessing technologies for utility grid, transportation and industrial applications.  “If the country continues to reduce the barriers to electric vehicle adoption, through better incentives and investment, it can generate additional jobs, improve our environment and increase our overall quality of life.”

“Electricity is one of the key alternative fuel sources that will enable the U.S. to reduce our dependence on oil, and electric vehicles present an opportunity for Georgia to lead in a growing industry that is creating jobs,” said Jules Toraya, a former US Army Medical Operations Officer and Platoon Leader and now a Program Manager in the Mayor’s Office of Sustainability at the City of Atlanta.   “The City of Atlanta offers the perfect landscape to create, test and scale a successful deployment program for electric vehicles (EVs).” 

 

Several Clean Cities programs working on petroleum reduction programs joined Atlanta on the statement. 

 

“Building the next generation of clean vehicles here in America will create good jobs and help move us to a clean energy economy,” said David Foster, Executive Director of the BlueGreen Alliance. “As we saw with successful Advanced Technology Vehicle Manufacturing incentives, investments in advanced vehicles created thousands of manufacturing jobs throughout the automotive sector and supply chain. Ramping up an electric vehicle fleet will also spur investment in vehicle electrification, creating jobs in construction and accelerating our move to a smart grid—just the kind of investment we need to put people back to work, revitalize our economy and ensure America is competitive in the 21st century economy.” 

BlueGreen Alliance labor and environmental partners focused on clean vehicle deployment, including the United Steelworkers, United Auto Workers, Communication Workers of America, Sierra Club and National Wildlife Federation, have signed today’s EV statement.

“Electric vehicle technology is already building jobs in Indiana –but we need to keep up that momentum,” said Barbara Simpson, Executive Director of the Indiana Wildlife Federation, an affiliate of the National Wildlife Federation.  “Cars and trucks that cut our dependence on oil, cut pollution, and boost local entrepreneurship and jobs, are a win-win for sportsmen and women and others who care about protecting natural resources and the future of Indiana.”

“Whether they are automakers, smart grid technology companies, electrical workers, environmentalists or just ordinary consumers, Americans are clamoring for electric vehicles,” said Michael Brune, Executive Director of the Sierra Club.  “By ensuring a strong standard of at least 60 miles per gallon for cars and small trucks in 2025, we will be able to make the switch to electric vehicles sooner, reducing dangerous pollution significantly and helping to break our nation’s dangerous addiction to oil.”

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The groups laid out in the statement recommendations for building a robust national EV program, including the following:

 

  • Expand national, regional, and local efforts such as EV charging stations and infrastructure to support electric vehicles in communities. 
  •  Remove unnecessary bureaucratic and market obstacles to vehicle electrification nationwide through a variety of policies that
    • bolster nationwide installation of and access to basic charging infrastructure, both at people’s homes and in public places;
    • incentivize the purchase of electric vehicles and EV charging equipment and streamline the permitting application process for EV charging equipment;
    • educate the public about the benefits of EVs and the costs, opportunities, and logistical considerations involved with EV charging infrastructure;
    • ensure appropriate training for workers installing EV charging equipment and for first responders;
    • encourage utilities to provide attractive rates and programs for EV owners and increase off-peak charging;
    • assist in deployment of clean energy, efficiency, and energy management technologies jointly with vehicle charging; and
    • accelerate advanced battery cost reduction by boosting EV use in fleets, in second use, and in stationary applications.
  • Ensure U.S. leadership in manufacturing of EVs, batteries and components, and creating good American jobs.

 

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