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: New Energy Industry Task Force Recommends Electric Cars

New Energy Industry Task Force Recommends Electric Cars

25 Oct

Earlier this year, Nevada Governor Brian Sandoval convened a New Energy Industry Task Force to study how emerging sustainable energy technologies might be applied to help grow the state’s economy by creating new local industries and more jobs:

http://energy.nv.gov/Programs/New_Energy_Industry_Task_Force/

Technical advisory committees were formed to research best practices for grid modernization, clean energy sources, distributed energy resources and energy storage technologies.

Participants in the task force and advisory committees were drawn from state and local government, the solar power industry, geothermal power industry, utilities, construction companies, homebuilders, high-tech companies, automotive companies, labor unions, academia, and supporting non-profit organizations within the state.

Meetings began during March 2016 and extended through August, when recommendations were compiled, voted on and submitted to the governor as a final list by the end of September.
A link to a PDF version of the list, as well as task force participants, can be found at the bottom of the New Energy Industry Task Force web page, under Miscellaneous Documents, as “NEITF Final Recommendations” dated 9-30-2016.

Support for transportation electrification, that included electric vehicle manufacturing and adoption of electric cars within the state of Nevada, was recommended because vehicle transportation fuel would be based on electricity produced within the state of Nevada, rather than refined gasoline imported from outside the state. This could create new industries and jobs, boosting the state’s economic output.

Adoption of more electric vehicles within the state would also improve air quality by helping reduce carbon emissions in urban areas of Clark County and Washoe County.

However, road usage tax revenues normally earned at the service station gasoline pump would also need to be applied fairly to electric cars, as well.

The task force recommended that the Public Utilities Commission of Nevada work with the Governor’s Office of Energy, the Nevada Department of Transportation, and regulated utilities to accelerate the adoption of electric vehicles in the state, as well as identify any legislative changes that might be required:

“An electric vehicle plan may include investments in or customer rebates for charging
infrastructure, in a manner that stimulates competition and customer choice in charging
infrastructure; appropriate tariffs for both consumer electric vehicles and heavy duty
electric vehicles; consumer or midstream vehicle incentives; and a plan to market the
benefits of electric vehicles. The PUCN would review any submitted plan to determine if
it is reasonable and will benefit all of its customers and review how costs of the
implementation of the plan shall be recovered. Similar legislation passed earlier in
in 2016 in Utah and Oregon.”

One suggested plan would be to offer financial incentives targeted at consumers, such as a rebate at the dealership point of sale that would offset state sales taxes up to $2,500 per vehicle. The cost of this program is estimated at $2.25 million per year to the state of Nevada in lost sales tax revenues based on a 50-percent increase in annual electric car sales of 900 vehicles.

Federal tax credits are also available to all consumers who purchase qualified plug-in electric-drive vehicles. The federal income tax credit for qualified electric vehicles can be up to $7,500, depending on the capacity of its battery pack in kilowatt-hours. A separate federal tax credit for the purchase and installation of electric vehicle supply equipment to recharge an electric car is available at 30 percent of the cost up to $1,000 maximum.

The quantity of plug-in electric cars offered by Nevada dealerships will increase during 2017.

Available models next year include both plug-in hybrid electric vehicles, that are capable of running on both electricity and gasoline, and battery-powered electric vehicles, that only run on electricity provided by an onboard storage battery.

Plug-in hybrid electric vehicle models for 2017 that will be available in southern Nevada include the Chevrolet Volt, Ford Fusion Energi, Ford C-Max Energi, Porsche Panamera S E-hybrid, Porsche Cayenne S E-hybrid, BMW i3 REx, and BMW i8.

Battery-powered electric vehicle models for 2017 available in southern Nevada include the Tesla Motors Model S and Model X, Chevrolet Bolt, Nissan LEAF, and BMW i3.

NEVA blog posted by Stan Hanel, Outreach Coordinator

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