EVs for EVeryone?

Thu, 10/08/2020 - 6:00pm

What’s an EV and is it contagious?

EV is short for “electric vehicle,” and while it is not contagious, we hope EVs will catch on out here on Block Island.

At the moment gasoline is relatively cheap and so you may not be thinking of alternative ways to power your car or truck. But don’t count on low prices to last very long. There are alternatives and now is a good time to position yourself for a change.

I have owned two Priuses (which generate electricity from the gas-powered motion of the car) and got around 40 mpg. That is good, but EVs have evolved so that gas consumption is no longer necessary.

As battery technology has improved, car manufacturers are now producing all-electric cars. Some have a range of about 50 miles (Honda Clarity); others can travel up to 150 miles (Nissan Leaf) before needing to be re-charged. This makes them quite serviceable for most transportation needs on Block Island.

Yes, you say, sure I can help the environment by not pumping exhaust into the atmosphere, but with our substantial electric rates, is it economical?

Keep in mind, an eGallon is the cost to drive an electric car the distance you would go on a gallon of gasoline.

Mal Skowron of Green Energy Consumers Alliance provides the following:

“Here is what an eGallon costs on Block Island: $2.46 year-round with a low of $2 in the winter months.”

One island EV enthusiast writes, “I have used three EVs over the past three years. Each got about 25 miles on a six hour house current charge... In winter, I figure it cost me $1.30 to go 25 miles!” Note: even these costs may be reduced if you have solar panels!

Competitive, right? But not enough financial incentive to make you change tomorrow.

Consider this: The Solar Initiative, in pursuit of our goal to reduce fossil fuel emissions, is offering subsidies on the purchase of four EVs. That’s right, subsidies to four persons of up to $300 per month (against your car loan payments) for up to three years. A potential savings of $10,800. Since we expect that more than four folks will be eager to obtain this subsidy, we have arranged an application and selection process. Just fill out this form and return it to the Solar Initiative, PO Box 484, Block Island, R.I. 02807 or email to the blockislandsolarproject@gmail.com.

Contact info (phone & PO Box)
____________________ ___________________
• I live on the island year round Y/N
• I intend to use this EV on Block Island Y/N
• I am willing to promote EV’s — bumper
sticker, quotes, word of mouth, etc. Y/N
• I will purchase my EV by Dec. 31, 2020. Y/N
Submission deadline is Saturday, Oct. 31.

EV must be able to plug into house current. The grant recipient will be expected to pay any additional loan cost, all operating costs, registration, insurance, etc. The subsidy will be made directly to the lending institution. Preference will be given to applicants who serve an important function for community safety, health or well being as determined by the awards committee.

So, if you are in the market for an EV, contact your car dealer and/or visit greenenergyconsumers.org. On the home page scroll down to “Drive Green,” click, then click on “Explore Cars.” You will find a number of EVs to consider; remember they need to be house current plug-in-able to be eligible for the subsidy.

Put yourself in the driver’s seat for savings and a greener environment.