Posts Tagged ‘electric vehicle charging station’

Consumers Are Coming Around on Electric Vehicles

WebProNews

By

https://www.webpronews.com/consumers-are-coming-around-on-electric-vehicles-2013-11

Consumers Are Coming Around on Electric Vehicles

As prices drop and technologies improve, electric vehicles are now set to become a mainstay on U.S. roads and even in the U.S. military.  Though adoption rates for the technology are clearly on the way up, manufacturers will still have to convince Americans that electric vehicles are cost effective, safe, and reliable.

Market research firm Navigant Research today released a survey report showing that American opinions on alternative-fuel vehicles are steadily improving.  The firm found that around 67% of those surveyed now view hybrid vehicles favorably and that 61% now view plug-in electric vehicles favorably.  Natural gas vehicles were also found to be viewed favorably by around 56% of those surveyed.

The survey also found that consumers looking for alternative-fuel vehicles are most concerned about saving money.  Fuel efficiency was a top concern for potential buyers, followed by other factors such as performance and the size of such vehicles.

Though the industry has obviously hit a tipping point, Navigant also found that manufacturers will have to work hard to build awareness for their brands.  The survey found that less than half (44%) of respondents knew of the Chevrolet Volt.  Awareness for other brands was even lower, with less than 33% having knowledge of the Tesla Model S, Nissan Leaf, and BMW i3.

“Two-thirds of consumers surveyed stated that they believe EVs have unique features that stand out from their gasoline counterparts, and 6 out of 10 agreed that EVs are much less expensive to own in the long run than gasoline cars,” said Dave Hurst, principal research analyst at Navigant.  “While those are encouraging numbers, it’s clear that automakers still have a long way to go in marketing these vehicles to the wider car-buying public.”

(Image courtesy Tesla Motors)

 

These 5 things need to happen before electric cars really go mainstream

By Lydia DePillis, Published: September 19 at 4:18 pm

The Washington Post

https://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/wonkblog/wp/2013/09/19/these-5-things-need-to-happen-before-electric-cars-really-go-mainstream/

In 1997, the world’s first real consumer-oriented electric car — the Prius — debuted in Japan. Sixteen years and many new models later, electric cars have stayed stubbornly at about 2 percent of global sales for light vehicles, which Navigant Research projects will only grow to 3 percent by 2020. Tesla may be doing well, but their $70,000 car won’t reach the masses anytime soon. Chevrolet’s Volt has had a rough ride, sales of Nissan’s Leaf have disappointed, several battery companies have failed, and Israel’s battery-swapping BetterPlace went under. Just this week, a car charging company that had received a $99 million federal grant went bankrupt.

But the sector is far from dead. The past few weeks have seen something of a boom in rollouts of new electric cars: General Motors is developing a $30,000 vehicle that can go 200 miles on a single charge, BMW is plans to launch the i3 this fall, and Volkswagen says it will bring an electric compact to the United States within two years. The all-electric Fiat just went on saleCadillac, Audi and Mercedes have prototypes as well.

Is the sudden proliferation a sign that electric cars are actually moving into the fast lane? Maybe. But there are still a bunch of pieces that need to fall into place before we’ll see very widespread adoption. Here’s what has to happen.

1. Batteries need to get cheaper. 

A battery for an electric car still costs as much as most regular cars — about $12,000 – $15,000 each. As Brad wrote back in May, that’s in part because they’re not like computer chips: You can only fit so many ions in the available space, so we’ll need a real chemistry breakthrough to increase their energy density.

It’s possible, though, that this is just a question of scale. McKinsey thinks the cost of batteries could be cut in half by 2020, as more factories come online to produce them, and Deutsche Bank sees car batteries declining in price the same way laptop batteries did. If China gets serious about reducing emissions, the scale problem could be solved — the problem then would be keeping up with demand.

2. Drivers need to believe they won’t be stranded.

Right now, only California has a substantial number of charging stations, which means it’s difficult to take a long-distance drive with your plug-in electric car. The Department of Energy dispensed a few million dollars for charging stations, but they can’t pay for all that are needed — the Center for Automotive Research estimates that charging infrastructure costs $2,160 per hybrid electric vehicle. In California, employers are increasingly offering charging stations to their staff, and NRG is starting to sell stations to anybody else who wants them. But it’s not like a gas station, where you can make a living selling fuel — these will have to be installed as amenities in workplaces and residences, or as part of government-driven efforts to string them along highways.

If electric vehicles really replace millions of gas-powered ones, they’ll also start to suck up more electricity than the grid can handle, which makes distributed generation — wind and solar energy, for example — much more important.

3. Policy supports need to expand, and not disappear unpredictably.

Over the years, America’s federal and state governments have enacted quite a few supportive policies for alternative energy — tax incentives, direct subsidies, fuel economy and renewable portfolio standards, high-occupancy vehicle lanes, etc. Particularly important, right now, is a California rule that actually requires large auto manufacturers to either produce zero emissions vehicles or buy credits from those who do. While it would help to see those kinds of programs be implemented on a federal level or even by more states, the fact that they exist in one of the United States’s biggest markets will kick-start production.

People in the alternative fuel industry know that incentives, which currently make electric cars much cheaper than they’d otherwise be, won’t stick around forever. Unpredictable disappearances, though, can be devastating. That’s what happened repeatedly to the wind industry, as tax credits expired again and again during partisan energy policy fights in Washington:

Screen Shot 2013-09-19 at 2.52.39 PM“Policy certainty is necessary for a length of time,” says Phyllis Cuttino, director of the Clean Energy Program at the Pew Charitable Trusts, which put out a report after hearing from the industry. “They said, ‘We only want it until we become cost competitive. And then, let us go.'”

4. Gas prices need to get high and stay high.

Auto manufacturers convince customers that the higher sticker price of an electric vehicle pays for itself over time through savings on gasoline, and that calculus looks better the more expensive gas gets. Unfortunately for the near term future of electric cars, gas is projected to stay steady for a while, which means batteries need to get cheap as quickly as possible.

chart

5. More people need to try electric cars.

People who’ve driven electric cars tend to understand they’re a lot like regular ones. Car sharing programs like Zipcar, which have introduced some electric vehicles as part of their fleets, are a good way to make the introduction.

“It’s one of the things that we see when we ask people about these technologies. If people have seen and experienced technologies, they are much more likely to consider them,” says Pew’s Cuttino. “If you are out west and you see a million wind turbines, you’re going to understand wind energy.”

Tesla wins in North Carolina, Paves the Way for Direct-to-Consumer Sales

By: posted Jun 27th, 2013

 

Tesla Motors continues to buck the odds, celebrating a major victory in the North Carolina Senate this week. The North Carolina Automobile Dealers — concerned about competition — set its sights on the green car company last month when it endorsed a bill that would’ve significantly curtailed Tesla’s ability to sell vehicles in the state. The legislation, supported by the Senate’s Commerce Committee, targeted direct-to-consumer sales which eliminate the need for dealerships. But Elon Musk and friends proved that it wouldn’t be quite so easy to squeeze them out of NCAD’s territory — Tesla took both North Carolina Governor Pat McCrory and House Speaker Thom Tillis on test drives to show off the car’s capabilities. Musk’s strategy seems to have paid off, as the North Carolina House of Representatives struck down the bill on Tuesday. With another victory under its belt, Tesla’s upward momentum shows few signs of slowing down anytime soon.

Via: Autoblog Green

Source: News & Observer

Find an EV Charging Station

The US Department of Energy maintains a great web resource for electric vehicle owners seeking charging stations near their homes and offices – click here to search for locations of alternative vehicle power near you.

Kirk-Rudy Ribbon Cutting – May 25th, 11am

Woodstock, GA. May, 2011 – At 11:00 a.m., May 25, 2011, Kirk-Rudy, a paper machinery manufacturer established in 1967, and a major employer in Cherokee County, will host a ribbon-cutting ceremony for its solar parking canopy with an attached Electric Vehicle (EV) charging station. This is the first solar canopy with EV charging station in Georgia; and the first EV charging station in Cherokee County.

Construction as of April 26th

Kirk-Rudy, a community leader in energy sustainability and recycling, had the solar array installed primarily to offset the company’s electricity consumption. Rick Marshall, President of Kirk-Rudy, expects the solar panels to offset the company’s electric usage by 30 percent. The solar array will also provide electricity for the charging station as well, thereby providing 100% “green”, renewable energy for the vehicle. Only one charging station is being installed at this time, but the design and construction allow for a second or third charging station to be easily installed in the future as demand dictates.

Creative Solar USA, Inc., headquartered in Woodstock, Georgia, designed, engineered, and installed the 100 kW solar canopy. Creative Solar USA has been designing and installing solar photo voltaic systems since 2008. In addition to reducing the long-term cost of electricity and providing beneficial shade for parked cars, Russell Seifert, the CEO of Creative Solar, for years has believed in the concept of solar parking canopies with EV Charging Stations and that they are a natural step in our nation’s quest for energy sustainability.

“We are honored and proud to work with Kirk-Rudy on such a monumental project,” said Mr. Seifert. “All of our labor and subcontracting was sourced locally and 85% of our materials were bought from Georgia based companies. Solar power not only helps our country with energy independence on a global scale, but is also a benefit to our local economic community.”

The charging station is made by ClipperCreek, Inc. and manufactured in Auburn, CA. Metro Plug-In, also of Woodstock, provided the charging station for the project. Creative Solar USA and Metro Plug-In find their two products to be a natural fit and both companies look forward to more joint endeavors.

The actual ribbon cutting will take place at 11:30 a.m., May 25th, at Kirk-Rudy’s office located at 125 Lorraine Parkway (near the intersection of Rope Mill Road & Ridgewalk Parkway) in Woodstock, GA to be followed by a BBQ luncheon.

Woodstock Business Installs Electric Vehicle Charging Station for Employee Use

Tucked away off the entrance road to Olde Rope Mill Park in Woodstock is one of Cherokee County’s largest industrial employers, Kirk-Rudy, which is investing its resources into a solar-paneled carport and electric car charging station.

The renewable technology is expected to supply all electricity needs for the 100,000-square-foot building that houses 95 employees.

“It’s definitely a feel-good project for us,” Marshall said.

The $500,000 project is expected to be completed by late March or early April. Marshall said the idea came after the company was exploring other cost-cutting measures. He said he attended a Georgia Power conference last spring, but at the time wasn’t sold on the idea of using renewable energy.

“But I dove a little deeper into it and realized that there are lots of credits and grants out there and started running the numbers and it made more sense,” he said. “So, we contacted some suppliers of these panels and got quotes and now we’re off and running.”

Russell Seifert, owner and CEO of Woodstock-based Creative Solar USA, is responsible for the solar car canopy, which runs on a 100-kilowatt system comprised of 432 panels.

Marshall said the canopy, which will have 50 parking spaces, works better than rooftop panels because installing them on a roof would require penetrating the surface and opening it up to leakage issues, and panels need to be cleaned periodically, which would be easier to do with them located closer to the
ground.

Read the whole story here (PDF)