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: Electrifying Nevada’s 21st-Century Transportation System

Electrifying Nevada’s 21st-Century Transportation System

15 Jan

The Nevada Governor’s Office of Energy kicked off 2019 by publishing a study of electric vehicle transportation and infrastructure development strategies within the state.

“Electrifying Nevada’s 21st-Century Transportation System: Actions, Opportunities, Aspirations” is a report written by Lauren Rosenblatt and Marie K. Steele from e-centricity, LLP. The 69-page document is available in PDF format from the NGOE website at this link:

http://energy.nv.gov/uploadedFiles/energynvgov/content/Home/Electrifying%20Nevadas%2021st%20Century%20Transportation%20System_Final.pdf

Some excerpts from the report:

Mission of the Nevada Governor’s Office of Energy (GOE):

“—The mission of the GOE is to ensure the wise development of Nevada’s energy resources in harmony with local economic needs and to position Nevada to lead the nation in renewable energy production, energy conservation, and the exportation of energy.”

Executive Summary:

“—Nevada’s future is electric, powered by its abundant sunshine and geothermal resources. Since the late 1990s, the State’s energy policy has been to maximize the use of these resources for energy independence and also develop the markets for it. As recently as 2016, Nevada’s Governor Brian Sandoval emphasized the strategic importance of the energy industry, directing a path to ‘become the nation’s leading producer and consumer of clean and renewable energy.'”

The Opportunity:

“—At this time, The United States is witnessing a shift away from the internal combustion engine as the primary technology of transportation. Electric vehicles are gaining market traction across the nation thanks to advances in battery technology: the cost for an EV battery has dropped 85% or more per kilowatt-hour in the past 8 years. Battery improvements are solving both the “range anxiety” and the pricing that have been a drag on EV adoption since early models became available. Both Nissan and Bloomberg New Energy Finance estimate that unsubsidized prices for EV models will be comparable to their internal combustion engine counterparts by 2025. Nevada’s neighbor to the west is boosting electric vehicle sales and uptake, which will have cross-border implications. With the coming of costcompetitive models, mass market adoption in Nevada and all around it is about to hit an inflection point.

Nevada is currently in an ideal position to take advantage of this coming wave of electrification.”

The Challenges:

“—Smart investment will need cross-agency collaboration on studies and pilots to test “next-gen” technologies, ensuring positive outcomes and that fast-moving developments don’t make the technology obsolete before the government reaps the benefits of a significant investment. These pilots must extend to understanding vehicle charging needs and patterns to ensure that electrified transportation and the energy sector realize their greatest synergies.

Multiple government agencies will be involved in finding the right resolution for each of the many issues raised by transportation electrification, from the high-tech world of cybersecurity to more tangible questions such as where to put the public charging infrastructure.”

The Action Plan:

“This Report takes a closer look at how Nevada has awakened to the possibilities of electric vehicles and advanced, electrified transportation solutions, but is just beginning to understand how the benefits extend far beyond transportation goals to economic development, clean energy, and clean air. The research did not produce any serious objections to an electrified transportation regime. Cost of implementation is always a factor, particularly for a state committed to a low tax burden. But, as identified in the pages that follow, electrified and advanced transportation technologies have become cost-effective, and in some areas, compelled solutions for meeting the State’s transportation needs and objectives.

This Report has identified sixteen objectives supporting five transportation goals. Each of the sixteen objectives are furthered by specific action items detailed within.”

Goal 1: Establish Leadership on Transportation Electrification
(1) Set an express policy mandate
(2) Create an authority to lead transportation electrification as a policy objective and outcome
(3) Address the state funding shortfall for transportation resulting from the diminished fuel tax receipts

Goal 2: Electrify Regional Connectivity and Mobility
(4) Electrify public transit buses
(5) Electrify school bus fleets
(6) Optimize integration of all EV load into electric grid

Goal 3: Electrify Multi-Modal Transportation for Reduced Congestion and Livable Communities
(7) Use TNC taxes to support electrified micro-/on-demand transit
(8) Create public charging infrastructure to support all vehicles
(9) Support EV uptake as a personal vehicle option
(10) Provide the rights of way and non-monetary support needed to place e-bikes and e-scooters as a local transportation option

Goal 4: Support Advanced, Electrified Transportation Technologies Development
(11) Continue to test and develop ACES technology for local transportation options
(12) Invest in ITS infrastructure
(13) Invest in Complete Streets with of view of integrating advanced transportation options and electrified public transit

Goal 5: Electrify Efficient Movement of Goods and Services
(14) Electrify fleets providing ground services at the airports
(15) Promote electrified long-distance freight and commercial operations fleets
(16) Access procurement options for medium- and heavy-duty vehicles in government fleets”

The attached Appendixes A and B of the report go into substantial detail about the legal policy framework, citing related Nevada Revised Statutes.

Appendix B also recommends 41 action items that suggest how each level of Nevada state, county, and city government can move forward to implement the development of required electric vehicle infrastructure.

Conclusion:

“The disruption of the transportation sector is no longer speculative. It is happening all around us. With the appropriate strategic leadership and execution, as opposed to waiting and seeing, Nevada is poised to benefit significantly from the convergence of the transportation and energy sectors. An electric, 21st-century transportation system will support Nevada’s goal to be a leading producer of renewable energy, and also the pioneer that is defining and pushing the limits of advanced mobility in the United States. To be that vanguard, it is imperative that Nevada mobilizes a regime to accelerate the electrification of all modes of transportation.”

“I believe that the auto industry will change more in the next five to ten years than in the last 50.” Mary Barra, GM Chairman and CEO.

NEVA blog posted by Stan Hanel, Outreach Coordinator

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