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New York to provide up to $3.5M to accelerate adoption of EVs

New York Governor Andrew M. Cuomo announced the availability of up to $3.5 million for innovative research and development proposals to accelerate the use of electric vehicles, to reduce the cost of installing and operating charging stations, and to provide recommendations on how they can be used for grid resiliency. The Governor has set a goal to reduce the state’s greenhouse gas emissions 40% by 2030.

There are 11 million vehicles registered in New York State (approximately 8.5 million light-duty, 2.5 million medium- and heavy-duty), but as of 1 November 2017, there were only about 23,000 electric vehicles registered in the state. The state’s Charge NY initiative, established in 2013, set a goal of 30,000 to 40,000 PEVs and 3,000 charging stations on New York roads by 2018.

New York has also adopted the California Zero Emission Vehicle (ZEV) regulations, which require automakers to sell an increasing number of PEVs in New York State. In 2013 New York joined with seven other states that have adopted these regulations to collaborate on measures to advance the PEV market in those states.

The state attributes the slow adoption of plug-ins to PEV to low consumer awareness, price differentials with gasoline vehicles, and a lack of fueling infrastructure, among other barriers. To help the PEV market become truly viable, the state says, the economics and impacts of PEV charging infrastructure must also improve.

New policies and technologies to reduce the strain on the electric grid from electric vehicle supply equipment (EVSE) and keep the cost of charging PEVs down are needed.

The goal of the solicitation is to help overcome market and technology barriers to broader PEV adoption by researching, developing, and demonstrating new technologies, strategies, and policies that can reduce some of the financial, economic, practical, consumer awareness, policy and behavioral barriers currently facing the industry. This includes projects that help make PEVs more desirable for consumers and more economically viable, while lowering their impact on the electric grid and maximizing their environmental benefits.

The New York State Energy Research and Development Authority will administer the solicitation, which is seeking proposals for research projects that show the potential impact of electric vehicles on job growth, technical advances, and the overall economy.

An area of particular interest includes proposals for innovative business models and technologies to better manage the relationship between electric vehicles and the electric grid. For example, proposals could focus on:

  • How to reduce the impact of charging vehicles on the grid;

  • How vehicles can be integrated into buildings to provide backup power; or

  • How to remotely manage electric vehicle charging at peak times.

The transportation sector is responsible for 40% of energy related greenhouse gas emissions in New York State.

Earlier this year, Governor Cuomo announced the Drive Clean Rebate, a $70-million rebate and outreach initiative to encourage the growth of clean and non-polluting electric car use in New York and promote the reduction of carbon emissions in the transportation sector. The initiative has already provided more than $3 million in rebates to New Yorkers for the purchase or lease of electric vehicles.

For the first three months following the launch of the Drive Clean Rebate, New York saw electric vehicle sales increase 61% over the same time period last year. The state also launched a new electric vehicle campaign that includes the installation of charging stations and incentives for employers to encourage employees to drive electric vehicles, as well as the installation of charging stations along the New York State Thruway.

In addition, the Governor announced the availability of $2.2 million from the Environmental Protection Fund in rebates for municipalities to purchase or lease electric, (plug-in hybrid or battery) or hydrogen fuel cell vehicles for municipal fleet use, and for installation of public charging or fuel cell refueling infrastructure. The state also revised regulations to clarify charging station ownership rules, and supported research and demonstration projects on new plug-in electric car technologies and policies.

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