Monday, August 25, 2008

One Million and 300 Million

As the political conventions take the stage, it's encouraging to see that both candidates support PHEVs and the development of electric fuel in the transportation sector.

Here's part of Obama's plan thanks to Politico:

Obama calls for 'clean energy' nation

Sen. Barack Obama on Monday called reducing the nation’s energy consumption “the great test of our time” and proposed billions of dollars in subsidies for business and consumers to encourage a “clean energy “ future. “We can do this,” he vowed in Michigan, the nation’s car capital, promising to spend $150 billion over 10 years on the effort.

The plans include a $7,000 tax credit to drivers who buy advanced-technology vehicles and $4 billion in direct assistance to Detroit automakers to help them build hybrid vehicles in the U.S. “I ask you to join me, in November and in the years to come, to ensure that we will not only control our own energy, but once again control our own destiny and forge a new and better future for the country that we love,” he said at Michigan State University in Lansing.

The three main components of Obama’s plan are:

— Get 1 million 150 mile-per-gallon plug-in hybrids on U.S. roads within six years.

— Require that 10 percent of U.S. energy comes from renewable sources by the end of his first term – more than double the current level. (25% by 25)

Reduce U.S. demand for electricity 15 percent by 2020.

“If I am president, I will immediately direct the full resources of the federal government and the full energy of the private sector to a single, overarching goal — in 10 years, we will eliminate the need for oil from the entire Middle East and Venezuela,” Obama said.

“To do this, we will invest $150 billion over the next 10 years and leverage billions more in private capital to build a new energy economy that harnesses American energy and creates 5 million new American jobs.”

To set an example, Obama is vowing to convert the entire White House fleet to plug-in hybrid vehicles within one year, and convert all federal vehicle purchases to plug-in hybrids or all-electric by 2012.

Obama also set several other ambitious national goals:

Weatherize 1 million homes annually.

Increase the efficiency of new buildings by 50 percent in the next decade through energy-efficient roofs and better-quality windows and ventilation systems.

— Increase the efficiency of existing buildings by 25 percent over the next decade through retrofitting that includes improved insulation and ventilation systems."

Plug ins are also part of John McCains energy plan. Here's part of his plan ,which includes a 300 million dollar prize for a new revolutionalry storage device.

"John McCain Will Propose A $300 Million Prize To Improve Battery Technology For Full Commercial Development Of Plug-In Hybrid And Fully Electric Automobiles. A $300 million prize should be awarded for the development of a battery package that has the size, capacity, cost and power to leapfrog the commercially available plug-in hybrids or electric cars. That battery should deliver a power source at 30 percent of the current costs. "

"Our nation's future security and prosperity depends on the next President making the hard choices that will break our nation's strategic dependence on foreign sources of energy and will ensure our economic prosperity by meeting tomorrow's demands for a clean portfolio." more

With both sides of the political coin supporting the development and commercialization of Plug in Hybrids, it's clear that the momentum in plug ins continues to grow.

Just last week, academics and energy professionals came together for a two day workshop to discuss and explore the future of plug-ins and how they can be implemented into the public infrastructure.

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editors note:
Check out the links, they include a wide variety of PHEV stories since our last post.


Friday, August 01, 2008

Plug In 2008

The Plug in 2008 National PHEV Conference in San Jose by most accounts was a big success. Here's one of the announcements that came out of the conference:

EPRI, GM, 34 Utilities Collaborate to Advance
Plug-in Hybrid Electric Vehicles

PALO ALTO, Calif. – July 22, 2008; The Electric Power Research Institute (EPRI) announced today a research and development collaboration with General Motors and 34 top utilities to facilitate integration of plug-in hybrid electric vehicles (PHEVs) into the grid, a key step in providing the nation’s drivers an alternative to petroleum fuels.

“The EPRI-GM-utility effort is the result of many years of work by EPRI and its members to advance plug-in hybrids and related infrastructure technology to a point of feasible implementation and eventual commercialization,” said Arshad Mansoor, EPRI’s vice president of Power Delivery and Utilization. “Seamless integration of PHEVs into the electric grid will require close collaboration between the automobile and electric sectors.”

PHEVs use domestically produced electricity delivered through the grid, with a lower cost to fuel the vehicles than that of petroleum fuels. Additionally, research released last year by EPRI and the Natural Resources Defense Council (NRDC) pointed to the potential of PHEVs to lower greenhouse gas emissions. The entire PHEV environmental assessment is available on the EPRI website .

“Electrically powered vehicles are going to provide tremendous benefit and excitement for the customer, while also hastening the move to a more diverse choice of energy alternatives,” said Jon Lauckner, GM vice president of Global Programs. “But we know that there are some key elements that need to be understood and put in place so customers can enjoy those benefits and get maximum use of these vehicles when we bring them to market. That’s why this relationship with EPRI and the utility partners is so important.” (clip)

“This research program will help link a low-carbon generation portfolio and a smart grid, which in turn will facilitate widespread adoption of electricity as an alternative transportation fuel,” Mansoor said. “PHEVs have the potential of creating tremendous value for society by use of lesser emitting and lower cost electricity.”

The collaborative will also address issues that ensure safe and convenient vehicle charging, public education, and public policies requirements to enable a smooth introduction of PHEVs as a transportation alternative to conventional vehicles.

Participants in the collaboration include Alabama Power, American Electric Power, Austin Energy, BC Hydro, CenterPoint Energy, Consolidated Edison of New York, Dominion, DTE Energy, Duke Energy, FirstEnergy Corp., Georgia Power, Great River Energy, Hydro-Québec, Manitoba Hydro, Nebraska Public Power District, New York Power Authority, Pacific Gas & Electric Company, Progress Energy, Public Service Electric & Gas Co., Sacramento Municipal Util. Dist., San Diego Gas & Electric, Southern California Edison Co. and Southern Company.

In another announcement at the convention, Google announced two more recipients of their "Recharge It" largesse. Here's part of the story from CNET: is investing $2.75 million into electric-vehicle maker Aptera and battery start-up ActaCell. The announcement, which follows Google's request for proposals from companies with electric car technologies, came Tuesday during the Plug-In 2008 conference in San Jose, Calif.
Aptera, of Carlsbad, Calif., makes street-legal three-wheelers with a unique, aerodynamic design.

The company aims to sell its Typ-1 model for less than $30,000 by the end of year. It's marketing a pure electric as well as a gas electric plug-in hybrid achieving more than 200 miles per gallon. The vehicles are supposed to accelerate to 60 miles per hour within 10 seconds, drive 120 miles on a full charge, and recharge from a 110-volt outlet.

ActaCell of Austin, Tex., aims to develop long-lasting lithium-ion batteries. On Wednesday it announced $5.8 million in series A financing led by Draper Fisher Jurvetson and including, Applied Ventures, and Good Energies. " And the technology may be groundbreaking.
If you missed Plug in 2008, you can still make another exciting conference, and you get to come to Austin in the beautiful fall of the year.

editors note:
Check out the links, they include a wide variety of PHEV stories since our last post.

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