Jump to content
Forums Gone... but not forgotten!
Pontiac of the Month

hdkeno's 1969 Firebird

2023 March
of the Month

  • Welcome!

    Welcome to Forever Pontiac, where we keep the memory of Pontiac alive with great discussion, maintenance tips, restoration/modification progression "blogs" and help from professional & DIY mechanics. Also, wonderful competitions that occur regularly. Please register for an absolutely free account to join in!

Car and Driver: Obama Plugs Into an EV Legacy, Funds National Plan for Fast Charging, Battery Research


Recommended Posts

President Obama with Plug-InBarack Obama may see his automotive legacy forever enmeshed in the once-unpopular automotive bailout of 2009 (thought it was President George W. Bush who signed the bill for the program in the waning days of his tenure), but taking a longer view, he might be seen as the Plug-in President. From the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009, which allowed various incentives and credits for electric vehicles and infrastructure, to his 2011 State of the Union announcement to increase grants and aim for a goal to put a million electric vehicles on the road by 2015, Obama has been bullish on EVs all along.


That 2015 goal, of course, proved to be overly ambitious—we passed a million EVs worldwide late last year—yet it hasn’t tamped down the administration’s enthusiasm for EVs. Instead it’s led to a more expansive, holistic approach that endorses electric-vehicle technology from the power station to the pavement. The release of a briefing and fact sheet this past week highlighted this approach, announcing an executive action that will unlock up to $4.5 billion in loan guarantees to support a wide range of federal and public-private partnership projects for renewable energy and energy efficiency. Those guarantees come via the Department of Energy’s Loan Program Office (LPO), which issued a supplement clarifying that vehicle-charging facilities, charging hardware, and associated software are now eligible for these loans.


It’s essentially the same funding gateway that enabled nearly $2.6 billion in Advanced Technology Vehicles Manufacturing (ATVM) loans to Fisker, Nissan, and Tesla to establish assembly facilities in the U.S., and a $5.9 billion loan in 2009 to Ford Motor Co. to upgrade facilities for more fuel-efficient vehicle components and EcoBoost engines.


A 2020 Vision for Charging


One of the most important projects related to the announcement is the formation of a partnership between the Department of Transportation (DOT) and the Department of Energy (DOE) for “a 2020 vision for a national network of fast charging stations for EVs in order to facilitate coast-to-coast, nationwide zero-emissions travel.” The declaration makes this project part of the Fixing America’s Surface Transportation (FAST) Act, the massive five-year, $305-billion bill that the President signed last September.


BMW i3 and Nissan Leaf at Shared CCS/CHAdeMO Fast ChargerThat partnership will take the broad view, addressing the location of charging stations and assessing costs for charging and utility infrastructure, while also considering the effects of demand-based charging for consumers and longer-term innovations like higher-power fast-charging systems.


And all of this, we should note, is separate from the $2 billion in fines for Volkswagen’s diesel-emissions scandal that will go toward electric-vehicle infrastructure.


A recent survey from the Union of Concerned Scientists (UCS), for instance, found that there’s widespread enthusiasm for EVs in the Northeast, yet the infrastructure has lagged, as has the number of available plug-in vehicles. “As our recent survey showed, there’s a real interest out there in electric vehicles—but a lot of drivers don’t know much about them, and worry that there isn’t infrastructure to keep them charged,” said Don Anair, the research and deputy director of UCS. “The White House’s new initiative is a real step in the right direction.”


Speedier Charging, More Power and Energy Per Pound


Another portion of the money (up to $10 million a year for five years) will go toward research aiming to bring battery costs below $100 per kWh, while tripling the specific energy to 500 watt-hours per kilogram at a durability of 1000 cycles.


Meanwhile the Department of Energy is also planning to partner with private companies “to examine the vehicle, battery, infrastructure, and economic implications of fast charging of up to 350 kW,” which could provide energy equivalent to 200 miles of range to a battery pack in about 10 minutes. The federal government plans to purchase up to 500 vehicles in the 2017 calendar year, and it invites state and local governments to join forces. There’s also a municipal fleet electrification plan aimed at smaller communities.


For the most part, this is good news to the industry. Wade Newton, director of communications for the Alliance of Automobile Manufacturers, a policy and advocacy group representing 12 vehicle manufacturers and about 77 percent of the U.S. vehicle market, pointed to the hard work on behalf of some automakers in making charging infrastructure more available, accessible, and affordable. He called those “some of the key challenges facing wider consumer acceptance [of electric vehicles].”


Automakers Embracing This Kind of Intervention


“Going forward, ongoing efforts by government and private-sector partners will be critical to wider consumer adoption and affordability,” added Newton. Charging companies, automakers, public utilities, and academic institutions are all part of this extensive plan—which could potentially change with a new administration.


“We see electric vehicles as a key part of the future of transportation and it seems that the White House and their partners see it the same way,” said Anair, of the Union of Concerned Scientists. “Whoever the next president is, they’ll need to continue to support a growing electric-vehicle market if we’re going to meet our goals of cutting oil use and reducing the risk of climate change.”


Whether that’s Drumpf or Clinton, the national stage for electric cars is amplified in a way it’s never been before.


Read Full Article

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Tired of these Ads? Register Today!

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now
Tired of these Ads? Purchase Enhanced Membership today to remove them!
  • Create New...

Important Information

We have placed cookies on your device to help make this website better. You can adjust your cookie settings, otherwise we'll assume you're okay to continue.