For drivers without garages, charging a big barrier to electric cars

By Kate Galbraith : sfchronicle (includes chart)

…The San Francisco metro area, at the intersection of environmental concern and technological prowess, has more electric vehicles than most cities worldwide. But for many residents, buying one remains unrealistic. Even as prices for EVs fall and the cars’ ranges increase, the hassle of plugging them in remains daunting for those who have only street parking. It is a problem that San Francisco and other cities will have to solve as governments around the world look to cut greenhouse gas emissions (California wants to slash them about 40 percent over the next 13 years).

“Obviously, we want to have significantly more charging infrastructure, not just in San Francisco but all around California,” said Assemblyman Phil Ting, D-San Francisco, who plans to introduce a bill next year that would ban new gasoline and diesel cars cars after 2040. Ting has an electric Chevrolet Bolt that he can charge at both home and work.

Charging stations are proliferating in city and corporate garages, thanks to investment by electric utilities and private companies such as ChargePoint and Tesla. But getting to them can be a hassle, and a parking spot at work can be expensive… (more)

Here is a situation where the state could get out of the way of the market and allow it to solve the problem at no cost to the public.

Instead of removing parking from new development, developers should be encouraged to install EV parking spaces in the new buildings to encourage more EV sales. Not many people living with car break-ins will go out and purchase an expensive new vehicle they can’t protect.


California Utilities Want To Charge Your Electric Car, Boost Stagnant Power Demand

Ben Bradford : capradio – excerpt

Electric utilities have an existential problem. The demand for electricity is not growing like it used to, dampening the need for new power plants, power lines and other infrastructure that drive their profits.

“From the early 1900s, the utility growth model was built on just expanding the infrastructure to more and more places, and we’ve almost been a victim of our own success in that the country is electrified,” says Kellen Schefter with the utility trade group EEI.

So utilities are looking for new ways to make money.

A couple years ago, Schefter wrote a paper about one remaining, largely-untapped market—transportation…(more)

SF’s effort to lead charge in promoting electric vehicles met with cost concerns

By : sfexaminer – excerpt

San Francisco’s proposal to require municipal sedans to go emissions free by 2020 won’t come cheap.

And that’s not all; the deadline may not be realistic as well, even though the number of vehicles impacted by the proposal — as few as 759 — is just a small fraction of the total fleet of vehicles owned and leased by The City.

To swap out gas-guzzlers and other polluting vehicles driven by city workers and replace them with electric vehicles — as well as install charging stations — could cost between $31 million and $95.1 million, according to a budget analyst report on the proposal to require The City fleet’s passenger vehicles are zero emissions by Dec. 31, 2020. That’ll depend on how many vehicles are actually impacted and the electric vehicle models purchased… (more)


December 2015: Best Month Ever for Electric Vehicle Sales in U.S., Despite Incredibly Low Gas Prices

By Gina Coplon-Newfield :sierraclub – excerpt

In December, when gas prices were the lowest they’ve been since 2009, U.S. consumers bought more electric vehicles than in any month ever. That month, 13,650 drivers bought or leased a new Nissan Leaf, Tesla Model S, Chevy Volt, Ford Fusion Energi, BMW i3, i8 and X5, or the many other models available. These fortunate people and their families will rarely, if ever, stop at a gas station. The December sales height marks a more than 10-percent increase from last December, which previously held the record for highest monthly sales of electric vehicles…

Plug-in electric vehicles are a clean, affordable choice over the gasoline-fueled conventional vehicles that are leaving our air dirty, our families sick, and our climate in peril. Even when considering the emissions from the electricity sources used to charge the vehicles, nationwide, EVs are significantly cleaner than conventional vehicles…

December’s record-breaking EV sales (after a strong November showing too) demonstrate that 2016 could be a big year for EVs and their happy drivers. I think we’re headed in the right direction, but we need to do more to pick up the pace(more)


Gov. Brown Signs Clean-Air Vehicle Legislation

AP : abcnews – excerpt

Gov. Jerry Brown signed into law several bills designed to boost use of clean-air vehicles in California.

One bill signed Sunday allows 15,000 additional electric and partial zero-emissions vehicles, or 70,000 total vehicles, to get green stickers that allow driving in carpool lanes even when solo.

Another requires freeway high-occupancy toll lane operators to allow clean air vehicles to drive for free or reduced rates. Such roads exist in Orange and Riverside counties, and the San Francisco area.

Another bill requires a property owner, rather than the person leasing it, to install an electric vehicle charging station and its infrastructure in most cases.

California makes up 40 percent of the nation’s electric vehicle sales and the governor’s press office says it surpassed more than 100,000 sold earlier this month… (more)

Car manufacturers have met the new clean air standards by developing more efficient motor vehicles and the public has embraced the new technology. Changes in automotive industry standards, including increased production of electric vehicles have resulted in a faster pace of emissions reduction than anything the anti-car movement has done. Fortunately, the legislators are supporting the switch to clean energy. Now we just need to tackle the parking and traffic problems at the polls.

Vote No on A and B (No money without accountability) and Yes on L if you want to keep your car in San Francisco.


See What All the Electric Vehicle Buzz Is About

by sierraclub – excerpt

Next week is National Drive Electric Week, (September 15-21, 2014) an annual event designed to showcase the speed, convenience, clean-air benefits, and fuel cost-savings of electric vehicles through ride-and-drives and other great activities. Whether you want to see a Tesla up close and personal or take a ride in a Chevy Volt, you don’t want to miss out on National Drive Electric Week.

More than 120 events are planned in 35 states — find one near you(more)

Electric Auto Association (promoting electric vehicles since 1967)



Environmentalists question the wisdom of this state legislation

What do you think of giving particular vehicles, powered by electric batteries, special rights to to park on city streets, eliminating more spaces for non-electric vehicles ?
We are all for cleaning the air, but there isa state bill that is being discussed in committee to reserve on-street space for electric vehicles only.  If if passes SFMTA will be forced to comply with or amend their current ordinances to implement that. How will this affect the community? Does this discriminate agaisnt certain classes of people who can’t afford the luxury of buying an “electric vehicle”?  Will that also hurt more families and push them out of the city?  What percentage of the SF residents own “electric vehicles”?  What will be the impact should this state legislation pass and SFMTA adopt it? It’s OK for people who have OFF-street parking but what about those who cannot afford garage fees?
The gasoline powered vehicles will run out of parking spots even faster. Consider how this will effect the additional thousands of housing units that the city has agreed to take on as part of the (RHNA = Regional Housing Needs Allocation) and you can see a real mess brewing.
This is meant to incentivize owners of gasoline powered vehicles to junk their cars and buy electric vehicles, but should this legislation pass, how many “electric vehicle”
spots will eat up the standard on-street parking spots. All very interesting when one looks at the many bills are being contemplated at the state level including some questionable CEQA reform bills — some nasty stuff there as well.

– Sent from a concerned environmentalist working on the SF CEQA legislation

An act to amend Section 21100 of the Vehicle Code, relating to vehicles.
AB 1158, as introduced, by Assembly Member Waldron – Vehicles: on-street parking for electric vehicles.
Existing law authorizes local authorities to adopt rules and regulations by ordinance or resolution regarding specified matters, including, among other things, regulating or authorizing the removal by peace officers of vehicles unlawfully parked in a fire lane
or on private property. This bill would expressly authorize local authorities to adopt rules and regulations by ordinance or resolution regarding designating and enforcing on-street parking spaces for electric vehicles.

Bill Text: The people of the State of California do enact as follows:
SECTION 1. Section 21100 of the Vehicle Code is amended to read:
21100. Local authorities may adopt rules and regulations by ordinance or resolution regarding all of the following matters: (q) Designating and enforcing on-street parking spaces for electric vehicles.

Comments welcome, especially from people who know the science behind the issues.