We’re halfway through the year and already 300,000 plug-in electric vehicles have been sold in the U.S. in 2013. On top of that, this week BMW announced it will begin mass production of its own line of electric vehicles (EVs), the i3. At nearly 4% of the automobile market in the U.S., the steady growth of EVs shows no signs of letting up. However, contrary to conventional wisdom, the strength of the industry rests not only on its environmental and economic benefits; EVs also make for some incredible driving machines.
By Roger Stark 07/30/2013
I recently co-chaired an American Bar Association/American Council on Renewable Energy (ACORE) webinar on SmartGrid and Microgrid technologies. For my inaugural blog post on Renewable + Law, I wanted to share the brief remarks that I made at this July 17, 2013, webinar regarding the importance of both technologies to our evolving 21st Century energy sector: In setting the stage for the presentations, I put forth two propositions, which may be provocative, but highlight the importance of the topic:
By Todd Foley 07/16/2013
If you ask any American from any state (red or blue): “What do you see as the energy source of the future?” they will answer “green.”
Green energy saves money at the pump and on the monthly power bill, fuels economic growth, and cleans the environment. Polls shows that Americans believe renewable energy is the most promising energy source of the future, not just for its environmental benefits but because of its triple bottom line - jobs, more secure energy resources, and a more resilient and less damaging fuel source. Even more importantly, when you ask Americans what type of energy sources they want their policymakers to support right now, polls show that nearly 80 percent of Americans want their representatives to vote for policies aimed at strengthening American renewable energy. But up on Capitol Hill, despite a history of strong bipartisan support for energy research and development, the majority of policymakers in the House of Representative are doing the exact opposite of what their constituents want. They are tearing apart a variety of programs that support American renewable energy, one of our most economically and environmentally promising industries. While we understand the importance of reducing the nation’s debt (and we all must do our part), it is the very technologies being defunded that are the key to the cheaper, cleaner, and more diverse energy supply necessary for a growing economy.
More so than any other time in history, Americans are focusing their attention on energy issues. From the president’s recent call to action on climate change to the possibility of finally attaining energy independence by the end of the decade, America appears to be entering a new golden age of energy development - great news for our energy security and economy. But for some policymakers on Capitol Hill, there is a need for a much better understanding that renewable energy is a significant and rapidly growing catalyst driving the American energy transformation.
The American Council On Renewable Energy (ACORE) believes Tier 3 motor vehicle fuel and emissions regulations present a significant opportunity to improve energy, economic and environmental security by utilizing a greater portion of biofuels in the transportation sector.
Plug-in electric vehicles like the Chevrolet Volt and Spark EV use electricity stored in a battery from the grid to move down the road. They also seem to generate as much “electricity” around dinner tables these days with interest and opinions. And while we encourage you to become educated before you form your opinions on electric vehicles, we believe it is important to offer insight on what it takes to put the pieces together to form a new transportation future. On one level, it is a simple lesson in the way we think about our automobiles. On another level, it is about investing, organizing, and implementing a transportation makeover on a grand scale.