$2 Billion For Cleaner Vehicles In California

by Jake Richardson

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California State Capitol Building, Sacramento, California
California State Capitol Building, Sacramento, California. Image Credit: Sascha Brück

California Governor Jerry Brown earlier this week signed measure AB 8 into law, legislation that provides $2 billion for incentives to encourage the purchasing of whole fleets of clean and low-carbon vehicles such as trucks, buses, and cars. It also provides incentives for the purchasing of cleaner construction equipment, and for consumers to buy the same kinds of zero-emission or low-emission vehicles.

Specifically the outlay is for:

… grants, loans, loan guarantees, revolving loans, or other appropriate measures, for the development and deployment of innovative technologies that would transform California’s fuel and vehicle types to help attain the state’s climate change goals. Existing law specifies that only certain projects or programs are eligible for funding, including block grants administered by public entities or not-for-profit technology entities for multiple projects, education and program promotion within California,  and development of alternative and renewable fuel and vehicle technology centers.

The measure is related to climate change in that it is designed to help California meet its goals in reducing emissions.

Hydrogen fuel is also supported.

The bill would require the commission to allocate $20 million annually, as specified, until there are at least 100 publicly available hydrogen-fueling stations in California.  The bill, on or before December 31, 2015, and annually thereafter, would  require the commission and the state board to jointly review and report on the progress toward establishing a hydrogen-fueling network that provides the coverage and capacity to fuel vehicles requiring hydrogen fuel that are being placed into operation in the state, as specified.

It was not only this very large measure that was passed, though. Five others were passed as well. California owners of low-emission vehicles will be delighted to know that high-occupancy diamond lanes will remain available to them until at least 2019. AB 266 is the related measure.

Similarly, vehicles with green stickers will be allowed the same access until at least 2019, courtesy of SB 286. Also related to EVs is measure AB 1092, which made a provision for electric vehicle charging systems at multi-family housing and non-residential developments.

Continuing the theme is the Electric Vehicle Charging Stations Open Access Act (SB 454). The aim of this measure is to make electric vehicle charging stations accessible to all EV drivers and owners.

Close to $50 million is allocated by measure SB 359 for programs designed to eliminate high-polluting vehicles. For example, the Clean Vehicle Rebate Project and the Hybrid and Zero-Emission Truck and Bus Voucher Incentive Project are two of  the programs that will receive this funding.

All in all it, it has been something of a resounding legislative bumper crop of support for EVs and LEVs in California.

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This article, $2 Billion For Cleaner Vehicles In California, is syndicated from Clean Technica and is posted here with permission.

About the Author

Jake Richardson Hello, I have been writing online for some time, and enjoy the outdoors. If you like, you can follow me on Google Plus: https://plus.google.com/u/0/103554956530757893412/

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The Tesla Model S Is Almost Maintenance Free

by Nicholas Brown – Special to JBS News

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Image Credit: Tesla

Electric vehicles are different from gasoline-powered vehicles in many ways. However, mainstream debates tend to focus on only a few of those differences, such as the initial cost of electric vehicles, their range, and the fuel efficiency of gasoline-powered vehicles.

For example, they rarely factor in the reliability or durability of electric vehicles. This may be due to the fact that the main motive electrification is the reduction of petroleum usage. And, of course, opponents of electric vehicles don’t like to mention their many other positive qualities.

The Tesla Model S actually requires little to no maintenance compared to gasoline-powered vehicles, due to the fact that it has very few mechanical parts that can malfunction. The only parts that require regular replacement are windshield wipers and tires. Brake pads will require replacement as well, but not nearly as often as those in gasoline-powered vehicles, since they are used much less thanks to regenerative braking.

Regenerative braking takes over some of the braking work, giving the brake pads a… break, and it does so without additional generators.

An electric propulsion system’s mechanical parts consist of the propulsion motor, the fans in the speed controller, radiator fans, a coolant pump (if there is a liquid cooling system), and that’s it.

But wait, don’t electric vehicles require more electronics?

They actually require fewer electronics than gasoline-powered vehicles, as a typical electric propulsion system contains the following semiconductor electronics:

  1. Speed controller.
  2. Inverter.
  3. Battery management system.
  4. Electrical, non-semiconductor parts include coolant pumps and fans.

Gasoline propulsion systems contain a longer list of them, including, but not limited to:

  1. Electronic actuators to adjust various valves.
  2. Ignition system.
  3. Throttle controls.
  4. Turbochargers (only in some models).
  5. Engine control unit.
  6. Transmission control unit.
  7. Oxygen sensor.
  8. Coolant pump.
  9. Fuel pump.
  10. Oil pump.
  11. Engine fan.
  12. Transmission oil cooler pump (only in some models).

Mechanical parts in gas propulsion systems which can fail include, but are not limited to:

  1. Transmission.
  2. Valves.
  3. Spark plugs.
  4. Crankshaft.
  5. Connecting Rod.
  6. Cylinders.
  7. Camshaft.
  8. Exhaust gas recirculation (EGR) system.
  9. Belt and pulley systems for driving the alternator, engine fan, and other parts.

Follow me on Twitter: @Kompulsa

Repost.Us - Republish This Article

This article, The Tesla Model S Is Almost Maintenance Free, is syndicated from Clean Technica and is posted here with permission.

About the Author

Nicholas Brown has a keen interest in physics-intensive topics such as electricity generation, refrigeration and air conditioning technology, energy storage, geography, and much more. My website is: Kompulsa.

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Electric Car Sales Pass Gas Stations For The First Time

By Jo Borrás – Special to JBS News

A Lot of EVs

EV milestones are coming hard and fast these days, with records falling, new companies showing up, and others shutting down before they really ever got going. There are highlights, however, and as electric cars sales boom, the “there are now more electric cars than …” comparisons are starting, as well. This week, the number of electric cars reportedly passed the number of gas stations in the US! (Of course, there are already hundreds of times more charging “stations” than gas stations — makes you wonder if gasmobile drivers don’t get range anxiety.)

You can check out the new numbers and get more details about recent electric car sales in the full article, which originally appeared on Gas 2, below. Enjoy!

It’s a Good News Day: There Are Now More Electric Cars than Gas Stations

More Electric Cars than Gas Stations

It’s another good news day here at Gas 2, as the total number of electric cars in the US of A has passed the number of gas stations for the first time since- Um … Since let’s say 1920.

120,000 to 119,000! WHOO-HOO!!

Now, of course, there are a few asterisks involved – chief among them is the car that can be seen in the photo, above. That Chevy Volt? It’s a plug-in hybrid as opposed to a “pure” electric car, but its numbers are included in the figuring, which also happens to use the 2007 numbers for gas stations (those are the most recent numbers available from the census, but most industry analysts expect that number to have dropped since getting the financing required to buy a gas station became significantly harder to get and keep after 2008.

With plug-in hybrid and electric car sales currently booming, we’re not too far away from the day when the annual sales of electric/plug-in cars exceeds that 119,000 figure. From there, we start talking about the tipping point for EVs to become the mainstream choice, because that day is coming, too. Even Bob “Maximum” Lutz thinks so.

Stay tuned.

Sources | Photos: US Census, Green Car Reports.

This article, Electric Car Sales Pass Gas Stations For The First Time, is syndicated from Clean Technica and is posted here with permission.

About the Author

I’ve been involved in motorsports and tuning since 1997, and write for a number of blogs in the Important Media network. You can find me on Twitter, Skype (jo.borras) or Google+.

 

Largest EV Fast-Charging Network To Roll Out In Netherlands

By Zachary Shahan — cleantechnica.com

Via EV Obsession:

The world’s largest nationwide network of EV fast-chargers is planned for the Netherlands, and ABB has just won the contract.

The task for ABB is to put a fast-charging station within 50 kilometres (31 miles) of all 16.7 million inhabitants of the Netherlands. In total, that will come to about 200 EV fast-charging stations.

Image Credit: ABB

Image Credit: ABB
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Here’s more info from ABB:

Each of the more than 200 Fastned stations along Dutch highways will be equipped with several multi-standards fast chargers, such as the 50 kilowatt (kW) Terra 52 and Terra 53 models, capable of charging electric vehicles in 15-30 minutes. The first ABB Terra fast chargers are due to be delivered in September 2013. Construction of the Fastned stations, which will have solar canopies, is expected to be completed by 2015.

To date, the Netherlands is the most populous country to roll out a nationwide fast-charging network. Fast-chargers will be located a maximum of 50 kilometers apart along all highways, and because of ABB’s multi-standard design, the network will be capable of serving EVs offered by all major car brands from Europe, Asia and the USA. ABB’s open standards-based cloud connectivity solution allows Fastned to create a user-friendly payment and access service for all drivers.

Sounds pretty good. For more details, check out the ABB news release.

*Note that the world’s first nationwide fast-charging network is supposed to roll out in Estonia.

Auto companies choose sustainability as a Core Value

by John Brian Shannon

Automakers embedding Sustainability As A Core Value

An international team of Volkswagen executives at the LEED Platinum certified VW Chattanooga plant, following the ‘Think Blue’ five-year (2012-2018) global sustainability initiative, have developed a comprehensive, four-stage Life Cycle Assessment (LCA) methodology that now serves as the template for its manufacturing facilities worldwide.

Baseline references in four key performance indicators (KPI’s) – energy, water, waste, CO2 and Volatile Organic Compounds (VOC’s) have been established to mark progress.

With Think Blue, Volkswagen management aims to reduce carbon and greenhouse gas emissions, water use, waste, and (VOC’s) at its manufacturing facilities another 25 percent by 2018. Information courtesy of cleantechnica.com

BMW to power Leipzig factory by wind energy

In addition to winning many prestigious awards for sustainable production practices, BMW is powering its Leipzig factory with four massive wind turbines located near the facility, which assembles more than 200,000 cars per year. See; BMW Group Dow Jones Sustainability Index Leader for 8th consecutive year.

Mercedes too, has upped the ante on sustainable production practices — and now boasts the largest selection of electric vehicles in the world.

Not all Electric Vehicles are boring, perhaps this little blue number will pique your interest…

2014 Mercedes-Benz SLS AMG Electric Drive
2014 Mercedes-Benz SLS AMG Electric Drive

Mercedes says the 2014 Mercedes-Benz SLS AMG Electric Drive will hit 62 mph in 3.9 seconds and a moment later, you will find that it is electronically limited to 155 miles per hour.

AMG’s latest supercar comes with 740 of the quietest horsepower you will ever own and can be recharged in 3 hours.

The automakers have responded to calls for sustainability in their production facilities and vehicle materials with passion, and continue to post huge gains in those areas.

But who would have thought that they could make sustainability so much fun for consumers? I’m getting on the bandwagon all over again!

JOHN BRIAN SHANNON

To follow John Brian Shannon on social media – place a check-mark beside your choice of Facebook, Twitter or LinkedIn: FullyFollowMe/johnbrianshannon