Electric Vehicles

Plug-in Electric Vehicle Action Tool

Plug-in Electric Vehicle Action Tool

January 2013

by Charles Zhu and Nick Nigro

Download the full report (PDF)

Explore the interactive version of the PEV Action Tool

The Plug-in Electric Vehicle Action Tool is the synthesis of 2 workshops as well as research conducted by the Center for Climate and Energy Solutions (C2ES). The PEV Action Tool helps state departments of transportation determine their goals for plug-in electric vehicle deployment and to chart out a path for reaching those goals. The PEV Action Tool is also a resource for learning about plug-in electric vehicles and best practices from other state agencies. Although state departments of transportation are the primary audience, many of the suggested actions and resources in the tool are applicable to other public entities such as local governments and other state agencies. 

 

 

Charles Zhu
Nick Nigro
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NARUC Passes Key Resolution to Support PEV Deployment

November 11-14, 2012 in Baltimore, Maryland

As exemplified in the PEV Action Plan, creating a consistent regulatory framework is necessary to enable a national plug-in electric vehicle (PEV) market. The framework includes electricity regulatory policy related to charging infrastructure providers, electric utilities, and consumers. The framework in the PEV Action Plan also includes recommendations regarding transportation infrastructure policy and industry standards.

The key bodies to engage on electricity regulation are the state Public Utility Commissions and the National Association of Regulatory Utility Commissioners (NARUC). NARUC can help set direction for states that are looking at regulatory reform, especially as it relates to alternative fuel vehicles. Ahead of its November 2012 meeting, C2ES along with the Natural Resources Defense Council and the National Governors Association participated in a webinar with public utility commissioners and related stakeholders on the importance of a regulatory framework for the alternative fuel market, including PEVs and natural gas vehicles.

At its meeting in Baltimore, NARUC took an important step toward creating this critical regulatory framework with passage of resolution that is compatible with the PEV Action Plan. The resolution aims to expand the alternative fuel vehicle market through regulatory reform and other related actions. Highlights from the resolution include:

  • NARUC urged state and federal regulators to collaborate with other policymakers to remove barriers to alternative fuel vehicle deployment and ensure consistent, fuel-neutral policies to help realize the full economic, environmental, and societal benefits of these vehicles.
  • NARUC supports policies that maintain the integrity of the utility system and design of innovative rate programs or incentives to maximize customer savings.
  • NARUC believes third-party providers of fueling and charging services that purchase power or fuel from a regulated public utility or other competitive energy supplier to provide to the public should not be considered public utilities and therefore not regulated as such.
  • NARUC supports a competitive AFV marketplace, where utility companies, businesses, governments, and third-party service providers are able to participate in the owning, leasing, operating, or maintenance of charging or fueling equipment.

The entire resolution can be found online here

C2ES and IEDC host workshop on PEVs and economic development

December 4, 2012 in Arlington, Virginia

PEVs help mitigate the effects of U.S. reliance on imported oil, and can help position the United States to compete in the global clean energy industry. With those facts in mind, the International Economic Development Council (IEDC), a Washington-based group that represents economic developers worldwide, asked C2ES to help put on a workshop that would bring PEV industry leaders and economic developers to the table in order to identify ways the two groups can collaborate on PEV deployment.

The workshop included nearly 40 participants and covered a broad array of topics on the PEV market as it relates to economic development. At the end of day, it was clear PEVs could play a notable role in spurring economic development for a variety of reasons (e.g., creating auto-related jobs,  and powering vehicles with domestic electricity to keep more money in the U.S. economy). It was also clear that more work between the PEV industry and the economic development community is necessary for cities, states, and regions to realize these benefits.

The workshop agenda can be viewed here

PEV Dialogue Group Responds to DOE Request for Public Comment

On August 28, 2012, the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) issued a request for public comment on the framing document for its EV Everywhere Grand Challenge. On October 29, 2012, the PEV Dialogue Group submitted comments, which are available for download at the bottom of this page. The Group believes EV Everywhere is highly ambitious, but appropriate initiative for DOE to undertake. Stakeholders look to leaders like DOE to set national priorities, especially those related to technology development and deployment. Through its network, including Clean Cities Coalitions and National Laboratories, the DOE has the expertise and resources necessary to take on our environmental and security challenges, especially those that require a long-term commitment.

The PEV Dialogue Group would like to help the U.S. Department of Energy to design and implement the EV Everywhere program in any way we can. The Group offers its expertise both collectively and individually to the EV Everywhere program if further questions arise.

Patience and policy needed on drive toward sustainability

I recently responded to a question on the National Journal blog, "What 's holding back electric cars?"

You can read more on the original blog post and other responses at the National Journal.

Here is my response:

PEV Deployment in the Northeast

Plug-In Electric Vehicle Deployment in the Northeast
A Market Overview and Literature Review

September 2012

by Charles Zhu and Nick Nigro

Download the full report (PDF)

C2ES wrote a comprehensive literature review on PEVs in the Northeast and Mid-Atlantic States for the Transportation and Climate Initiative (TCI). Funded through a U.S. Department of Energy grant, the literature review is a comprehensive look at the opportunities and challenges for PEVs in these states relying on the latest research and market data.

Click here to download the report from Georgetown Climate Center’s website.

 

 

 

 

Charles Zhu
Nick Nigro
0

Eileen Claussen Comments on the Federal Government's New Fuel Economy Standards

Statement of Eileen Claussen
President, Center for Climate and Energy Solutions

Aug. 28, 2012

This is a win all around - it saves consumers money, reduces dependence on foreign oil, and is the biggest step ever by the United States aimed at reducing carbon emissions.

While Congress remains utterly gridlocked on energy and climate issues, the Obama administration and the auto industry have proven that real progress is still possible.  Working together, they've crafted a common-sense solution that taps technological innovation to benefit both the economy and the environment. Credit also goes to the state of California, for paving the way, and to the regulatory flexibility afforded by the Clean Air Act.

This is a victory for climate protection, but only one of the major steps needed to dramatically reduce our carbon emissions. Next we must tackle emissions from power plants and other stationary sources. The climate benefits may not be as easy to see as lower prices at the pump, but are no less real.

Recent extreme weather and the worst drought in half a century illustrate the costly toll of increased warming. Climate change is no longer a prediction - it is here and now. As the costs become more pronounced, we will hopefully see the strong public support and political leadership needed to mobilize an effective across-the-board response.

For more information, view our Federal Vehicle Standards page.

Contact: Laura Rehrmann, 703-516-0621, rehrmannl@c2es.org
 

About PEV Dialogue

Since 2011, the PEV Dialogue Group has focused on three challenges – (1) making sure electric vehicle owners can conveniently plug in at home and on the road, (2) safeguarding the reliability of America’s electrical grid; and (3) informing car buyers. The Group’s report, An Action Plan to Integrate Plug-in Electric Vehicles with the U.S. Electrical Grid, provides a roadmap for achieving these objectives. 

The Action Plan, released on March 13, 2012, recommends coordinated action by the public and private sectors at the state and local levels to harmonize regulatory approaches across the country, balance public and private investments in charging infrastructure, and help consumers understand the benefits and choices offered by electric vehicles.

To meet our climate, energy, and transportation challenges, we must also implement strong fuel economy standards, advance other alternative fuels and technologies, and pursue other policies that help reduce vehicle miles traveled. Electric vehicles are only part of the solution, but potentially, a significant one.

The Action Plan takes a broad look at the challenges related to PEV-grid integration such as a consistent regulatory framework and consumer education. It suggests roles for businesses, electric utilities, government, and NGOs in electric vehicle deployment, and it identifies needed actions for a compatible regulatory framework, public and private investment, PEV rollout, and consumer education.

The next phase of this initiative constitutes the implementation of the Action Plan. We have already executed specific activities (see below) prescribed in the Plan. The following focus areas embody both types of follow-on actions:

  • Connect Leaders around the Country: Convene electric vehicle leaders to foster state-level action, specific to the needs of transportation agencies and PUCs, through peer exchanges and educational workshops. Be the connective tissue for disparate efforts nationwide to encourage the sharing and development of best practices, and to ensure that actions taken at state and local levels are compatible with each other.
  • Advise Individual Efforts: Provide strategic advice to state and local electric vehicle planning efforts. Focus on regulatory issues, optimizing public and private investments, and facilitating rollout. 
  • Driver Behavior Analysis: Conduct research on electric vehicle driver behavior as it relates to vehicle charging infrastructure needs, grid reliability, transportation system financing, and maximizing electric miles traveled.
  • Consumer Education Strategy: Create and promote a web platform to educate consumers on the electric vehicle value proposition and electric vehicle technology.

In this implementation phase, C2ES has been working with the PEV Dialogue Group to implement the Action Plan. C2ES has led and will lead efforts to advocate for implementation of the Action Plan with businesses, stakeholders, and officials at the local, state, and federal levels. The emphasis has been on solutions to key challenges including harmonizing a regulatory framework nationwide, overcoming the consumer information gap, and optimizing public and private investments.

Activities, Events, and Milestones

Current and Past Projects

PEV Action Tool for State Transportation Departments

C2ES partnered with eight state transportation departments and the U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT) to understand the role of state DOTs in supporting plug-in electric vehicle (PEV) deployment. The states involved in the project are Arizona, California, Georgia, North Carolina, Ohio, Oregon, Washington, and Wisconsin. Other states can join the project, known by state DOTs as a “pooled fund study,” at their discretion. Spearheaded by the Washington State Department of Transportation, a PEV Dialogue Group member, the project was a unique effort to exchange information and identify best practices for state DOTs nationwide.

Using the PEV Dialogue Group’s Action Plan as a foundation, C2ES ran peer-exchange workshops with representatives from participating states to develop a PEV ActionTool for state DOTs. The tool helps these important players in the PEV market understand their roles and responsibilities given the unique objectives of different states. For instance, some states may wish to be proactive supporters of PEV deployment, while others may wish to focus on adapting department operations to account for the needs of PEV drivers.

C2ES relied on information exchanged by state transportation officials and the advice of PEV Dialogue Group members and other experts to create the project’s final product. The PEV Action Tool identifies best practices for transportation departments, and helps these departments evaluate their effectiveness at achieving any PEV-related goal for the state.

Project Activities

Policies and Fleets Workshop

March 28-29, 2012 in Berkeley, California

At University of California Berkeley’s Goldman School of Public Policy, C2ES conducted the first workshop for a Peer Exchange for State Departments of Transportation on Electric Vehicles in March 2012. The workshop brought together representatives from each state involved in the project along with well-known speakers and participants in the Bay Area. The workshop focused on public policies related to plug-in electric vehicles and opportunities related to fleet procurement. Sessions ranged from the plug-in electric vehicle market and vehicle technology to transportation finance policy.

Download the full workshop agenda. Presentations from the workshop are listed below.

 

Charging Infrastructure Workshop

June 25-26, 2012 in Raleigh, North Carolina

Press release

The City of Raleigh hosted the second workshop C2ES has conducted for a Peer Exchange for State Departments of Transportation on Electric Vehicles. The workshop brought together representatives from each of the eight states participating in the project along with national representatives from the American Association of State Highway and Transportation Officials (AASHTO), the Federal Highway Administration, and the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.

At the workshop, C2ES introduced a draft of the project’s main product, the PEV Readiness Self-Assessment Tool. An overview of the tool is available in the presentation linked to at the bottom of this page. The remainder of the workshop focused on charging infrastructure issues with sessions titled:

  • The Evolution of Action on Electric Vehicles: Stimulus Funding, Jobs, and Changing Leadership
  • Who Builds What Where? Roles for Transportation Departments in Charging Infrastructure Deployment
  • Sustaining Electric Vehicles and Infrastructure after the Stimulus and through Leadership Change
  • Harmonizing PEV Promotion with Transportation Finance Concerns

Download the full workshop agenda. Presentations from the workshop are listed below.

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