Thursday, February 26, 2009

Colorado Gets Charged Up for Electric Cars

Schwartz’s Electric Car Showcase

Wows Crowds at the State Capitol

DENVER— They came. They saw. They conquered a few hearts. Today, dozens of visitors came to the State Capitol to learn more about neighborhood electric vehicles (NEVs) and Senate Bill 75.

Several neighborhood electric vehicles were displayed on the East Lawn to the delight of those who decided to hop behind the wheel and take a spin around the Capitol grounds. Senator Gail Schwartz (D-Snowmass) was on hand to tout the benefits of NEVs. Joined by Tom Perkins, owner of Motor City Dodge (Colo. Springs); Valerie Weber Hamann, president of Evergreen Consulting Services; Shae Singer from Aspen Electric Cars; and Aaron Nelson, project director for Alliance for Sustainable Colorado, the event underlined the importance of Senate Bill 75 and the move toward a sustainable electric transportation system.

“Neighborhood electric vehicles will help drive Colorado’s new energy economy,” said Sen. Schwartz. “These vehicles are a greener way to travel around town – to the store, to drop the kids off at school, to dinner and a movie – and I can’t wait to see these vehicles on city streets from Fort Collins to Alamosa.”

“Senate Bill 75 is triple-bottom line policy. The Neighborhood Electric Vehicles legislation reduces carbon emissions, stimulates our economy, and supports community,” Nelson said.

Supporters say the widespread adoption of these eco-friendly vehicles will stimulate neighborhood cohesion by encouraging shorter trips to local small businesses, reducing load on public roads and parking areas, as well as encouraging new job growth in an emerging industry.

Senate 75 is scheduled to be heard in Appropriations before heading to the Senate for 2nd reading. The bill will set statewide standards for the safe operation of electric cars and make it easier than ever to drive one.

This piece of legislation is the result of months of collaborative work with dedicated individuals and Alliance for Sustainable Colorado. We are ready to move Colorado towards a future focused on expanding access to alternative forms of transportation that fit within the framework of Colorado’s New Energy economy, and this bill is another step in the right direction for our state.”

The House Sponsor of SB 75 is Representative Don Marostica (R-Larimer County).

Fast Facts about Neighborhood Electric Cars:
Zero emissions
No gas required
30-45 mile driving range
Estimated battery life 25,000 miles
Easily charged at any standard 110V outlet
Average cost of operation is 1-3 cents/mile
4-6 hours charge time from 50% to full battery
Prevents over 12,000 pounds of emissions from tailpipes annually
for every replacement of gas powered vehicles