Electric Vehicle Event Promotes Use Of Electric And Plug-In Hybrid Electric Vehicles For Energy Security, The Environment And Economy: New York Power Authority Hosts Clean Transportation “Ride-and-Drive” Event

Michael Saltzman
(914) 390-8181

November 30, 2010

Photos and Captions


WHITE PLAINS—Opportunities for deploying electric vehicles (EV) and plug-in hybrid-electric vehicles (PHEV) were highlighted Tuesday at the New York Power Authority’s (NYPA) White Plains office, where representatives of electric utilities, automakers, charging equipment manufacturers, environmentalists, local governments, and vehicle fleet operators joined together at an EV workshop and “ride-and-drive” event.

Participants heard from speakers on public-private partnerships for encouraging purchases of the new generation of plug-in electric vehicles and on measures for establishing the necessary electric-charging stations. The Power Authority’s downstate government electricity customers and other interested parties received technical information on the utilization of the advanced technology vehicles, including several that were showcased at the afternoon ride-and-drive portion of the event. Among the vehicles were the GM Volt, plug-in Toyota Prius,
Mitsubishi i MiEV, and the Transit Connect Electric, an electric commercial van manufactured by Ford Motor Co., in partnership with Azure Dynamics Corp., an electric-drive vehicle innovator.  

The day-long event included remarks by officials from NYPA, New York City & Lower Hudson Valley Clean Communities (NYCLHVCC), the U.S. Department of Energy Clean Cities’ Program, the City of New York, Federated Conservationists of Westchester County, New York State Energy Research and Development Authority, National Grid, General Motors, Ford, Toyota, Mitsubishi and several charging-station equipment suppliers.

“Electrified vehicles, hybrids and other alternative-fueled vehicles are essential for enhancing our energy security, the environment and economy,” said Richard M. Kessel, NYPA president
and chief executive officer. “The innovative technologies of these vehicles are synonymous
with significant benefits for reducing oil dependence, combating heat-trapping greenhouse gas emissions and developing new clean energy jobs, which are imperative for invigorating New York’s economy. 

“The Power Authority and other key public and private-sector organizations and not-for-profits are working to advance these goals, for which Governor Paterson has provided strong leadership and that are part of Governor-elect Cuomo’s comprehensive agenda for a cleaner, greener New York,” added Kessel. “Today’s EV workshop and ‘ride-and-drive’ event is in line with these efforts.”     

The Power Authority held the event in conjunction with NYCLHVCC—the regional chapter of the DOE’s Clean Cities program.  NYPA and other participating organizations at the workshop are on the board of directors of the clean communities’ organization, which is dedicated to accelerating the introduction in the region of plug-in electric vehicles and other alternative-fueled vehicles.

“Consumer information, outreach and education are vitally important for expanding the use of electric vehicles, plug-in hybrid electrics and other alternative-fueled vehicles,” said Mike Scarpino, Clean Cities Regional Project Manager at the U.S. Department of Energy, National Energy Technology Laboratory. “That’s what symposiums like today’s event are all about in bringing key stakeholders together to raise awareness for putting more of these vehicles on the road since no one entity can do it alone. The transportation sector accounts for about one-third of greenhouse gas emissions, underscoring the environmental benefits of zero and low-emission vehicles and their crucial role as part of the solution to the global warming problem.” 

“Sustainable transportation, as represented by the electric-drive vehicles that we’re spotlighting today, is an endeavor for which we can make significant strides in utilizing advanced technologies now available,” said Steven J. Levy, chair of the NYCLHVCC and co-president of Federated Conservationists of Westchester County, an advocacy group dedicated to reducing greenhouse gas emissions and promoting alternatives to conventional transportation.  “Fuel-efficient ‘green vehicles’ can make a real difference for addressing the vexing problems of petroleum dependence and greenhouse gas emissions. Significant progress is also being made in providing the plug-in electric infrastructure for making recharging practical and convenient, particularly for vehicle fleet operators.”         

Over the last two decades, the Power Authority has spearheaded an electric transportation program that has become one of the nation’s most ambitious for placing into service electric and hybrid-electric vehicles.  To date, NYPA has helped put on the road more than 1,200 electric-drive vehicles—trucks, buses, vans, passenger cars and off-road vehicles—serving its own vehicle fleet and those of its customers.  Together, the vehicles have logged more than 11 million miles, displacing tens of thousands of barrels of oil.   

The Power Authority leverages its funds in helping to arrange for other government grants in support of the acquisition by public entities of plug-in electric vehicles. This helps to cover any incremental purchase costs beyond standard vehicles, including charging equipment.

Other parties that participate in the Power Authority’s Electric Transportation Program include community-owned electric systems around the state—municipal electric systems and rural cooperatives whose residential and business customers benefit from NYPA’s low-cost power.

About NYPA:

■ The New York Power Authority uses no tax money or state credit. It finances its operations through the sale of bonds and revenues earned in large part through sales of electricity. ■ NYPA is a leader in promoting energy efficiency, new energy technologies and electric transportation initiatives. ■ It is the nation's largest state public power organization, with 17 generating facilities in various parts of New York State and more than 1,400 circuit-miles of transmission lines. ■ Approximately 80 percent of the electricity it produces is clean renewable hydropower.  Its lower-cost power production and electricity purchases support hundreds of thousands of jobs throughout the state. ■For more information, www.nypa.gov.


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