7-state Midwest EVOLVE project to promote electric vehicles; Ford, GM, Nissan initial automotive partners
The American Lung Association of the Upper Midwest announced the launch of Midwest EVOLVE, a three-year project to promote electric vehicles in seven Midwestern states: Ohio, Michigan, Indiana, Illinois, Wisconsin, Minnesota, and North Dakota.
In partnership with eight Clean Cities coalitions, Midwest EVOLVE (Electric Vehicle Opportunities: Learning, eVents, Experience) will demonstrate the performance and environmental benefits of plug-in electric vehicles through showcases, ride and drives, and events in communities throughout the seven-state region.
The Lung Association and the eight Clean Cities coalitions will host more than 200 events, large and small, over a three-year period, in brand-neutral settings that will give Midwestern drivers an opportunity to get behind the wheel of electric vehicles. The first events will be held in the spring of 2017.
The Midwest is often overlooked as a market for electric vehicles. The goal of Midwest EVOLVE is to build awareness and visibility for the advantages of electric vehicles, and to help the Midwest rediscover the automobile again, this time with a plug.
There’s no better way to learn about the performance and environmental advantages of electric vehicles than personal experience. By participating in existing major consumer events throughout the Midwest, hosting ride and drives, and conducting seminars, we are working with local Clean Cities coalitions to get the word out.—Lew Bartfield, president and CEO of the American Lung Association of the Upper Midwest
The Midwest EVOLVE educational program will target the general public, fleet decision makers, and dealership personnel. Showcases will occur in major metropolitan areas of the seven states providing hands-on experience by:
Allowing motorists to test drive a variety of locally available electric vehicles.
Educating consumers about vehicle charging at home, work, and public stations.
Helping people determine the best vehicle and charging options for their needs.
The Midwest EVOLVE project initially launches with three automotive partners, Ford Motor Company, General Motors, and Nissan, as well as more than 60 other partners throughout the Midwest, including Argonne National Laboratory, utilities, state agencies, municipalities, dealerships, and dealer associations. The partners support the project through donations, vehicles for test drives, and in-kind support.
In addition to helping the public learn about electric vehicles, Midwest EVOLVE is focused on fostering the rollout of additional charging stations throughout the Midwest, including public-charging stations and employer-based workplace charging. Nationwide, there are more than 40,000 public-charging stations in the United States.
The Midwest EVOLVE project is based upon work supported by the US Department of Energy, Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy (EERE), under Award Number DE-EE0007743. The American Lung Association in the Upper Midwest and Twin Cities Clean Cities oversee the program.