Category Archives: Electric Vehicles

Ford shifts gears, invests $11 billion in future of electric car production

By Keith Naughton, Ryan Beene and Gabrielle Coppola / Bloomberg News
Published by The Omaha World-Herald

Ford Motor Co. will more than double its spending on electric vehicles, amplifying its investment in a segment that the auto industry sees growing from what’s now just a fraction of the market.
The carmaker will shell out $11 billion to bring 40 electric vehicles to market by 2022, Jim Farley, president of global markets, said during a presentation at the Detroit auto show. That’s up from the $4.5 billion that Ford said in late 2015 it would invest through the end of the decade.
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ALSO OF POTENTIAL INTEREST
NPPD’s pilot EV charging station incentive program
Nebraska Public Power District, in partnership with its wholesale utility customers, has a need to understand the future impact of electric vehicle charging on the electric distribution system. Electrification of the transportation sector is expected to grow and have a substantial impact on the electricity delivery system. By collecting data on individual charging stations, the utilities can better implement strategies to maintain and improve utility infrastructure. In order to collect this information, the utility is offering an incentive to eligible customers with qualifying equipment. A $200 EnergyWise incentive for the installation of a residential vehicle charging station is available for a limited time from Nebraska Public Power District and your local public power utility.

NPPD launches pilot EV charging station incentive program

Nebraska Public Power District, in partnership with its wholesale utility customers, has a need to understand the future impact of electric vehicle charging on the electric distribution system. Electrification of the transportation sector is expected to grow and have a substantial impact on the electricity delivery system. By collecting data on individual charging stations, the utilities can better implement strategies to maintain and improve utility infrastructure. In order to collect this information, the utility is offering an incentive to eligible customers with qualifying equipment.

A $200 EnergyWise incentive for the installation of a residential vehicle charging station is available for a limited time from Nebraska Public Power District and your local public power utility. This incentive is for customers living in the service area of NPPD or its wholesale customers who purchase an electric vehicle and choose to install a ChargePoint 32 amp WI-FI enabled station. Other charging stations may be incented but must pass pre-approval criteria. To qualify for the pilot incentive program, the installation location of the charging station must have internet wireless connectivity.

Additional details about the program are available here.

Billions from VW settlement boost push to clean vehicles: Iowa, other states deciding how to spend their share of funds

 By Martha T. Moore, The Gazette

South Carolina wants to replace aging school buses. Colorado plans to electrify Denver’s bus system. And Washington wants electric ferryboats for Puget Sound . . . States can spend as much as 15 percent of their payout to subsidize construction of public charging stations for electric cars. Most states are likely to spend the full amount, said Nick Nigro of Atlas Public Policy, a transportation electrification consulting firm: 17 states have already said they will do so. (Under a separate part of its court settlement, Volkswagen is spending $2 billion to build electric car charging stations and $10 billion to buy back diesel cars from consumers.) Clean-energy advocates say public transit and school buses are likely targets for state programs for diesel replacement. Parents like the idea of getting rid of diesel fumes at the school bus stop. And the VW funds are arriving at a time when transit systems around the country are increasingly trying out electric and hybrid buses. Click here to read the entire article. 

Photo: Volkswagen cars are loaded in a delivery tower at the plant of German carmaker in Wolfsburg, Germany. Credit: Reuters / Fabrizio Bensch

IN NEBRASKA

Tesla’s electric semi truck: Elon Musk unveils his new freight vehicle

By Umair Irfan, Vox

The semi is a fully electric Class 8 truck, a category of freight vehicles that weigh more than 33,000 pounds, including tractor-trailer rigs that form the backbone of commercial road freight. This one, Musk said, can haul 80,000 pounds.Tesla’s offering has a range of 500 miles at maximum weight at highways speeds, much higher than early spec reports of a range of 300 miles. Read more here.

ADDITIONAL RECOMMENDED READING
Tesla Roadster: Elon Musk unveils ‘fastest production car ever’ in shock announcement, The Telegraph

Registration Open for “Introduction to Electric Vehicles” Class at UNO

January 8 – May 4, 2018
Tuesdays from 12 noon to 1:15 p.m.
Peter Kiewit Institute – Room 259
1110 S 67th Street, Omaha, Nebraska 68182

Registration Information
Electrical & Computer Engineering (ECEN) 4980
Class Number: 28219
Maximum Class Enrollment: 10
Credit Hours: 1
Class Link

Instructor: Don Cox

After retiring from Stanford University, where he taught engineering courses and supervised graduate research, and where he had earned his Ph.D., Don Cox took a position at UNL as an adjunct professor in the College of Engineering. He is a UNL alum, with an M.S. degree in electrical engineering. His avocation is electric vehicles, and in addition to the EV class currently offered at UNO, he teaches a similar course at UNL.

Owner of four Teslas, Cox is known to generously offer demo rides to other EV enthusiasts, including UNL students and colleagues, as well as attendees at various community events, including Nebraska Sierra Club’s Drive Electric Week event in Omaha on September 9th.

Cox shares his Model S Tesla with former State Senator Ken Haar, who in his “retirement” is giving presentations on climate change all around Nebraska, including “gatherings in homes, churches and even Knights of Columbus meetings.” See Omaha World-Herald article written by Paul Hammel, The Good Life: Electric car does the driving, and talking, for climate change message around state.

 As noted above, UNO’s EV class enrollment is limited to 10.

Top photo credit: UNO, Peter Kiewit Institute. Photo by NET of Professor Cox and his Model S Tesla

Tesla updates Supercharger network with new upcoming stations enabling new routes and city charging

By Fred Lambert, Electrek 

Following the launch of Tesla’s new “urban” Supercharger stations [yesterday], the automaker updated its new “upcoming stations” on its map and it now features the expected locations of hundreds of new stations coming next year. Tesla updated the map earlier this year with its plan to reach 10,000 Superchargers by the end of 2017. The automaker just now reached 900 Supercharger stations with 6,000 Supercharger stalls toward that goal and it has a just as ambitious goal to have 18,000 Superchargers in its network in 2018. Read more here.

ALSO IN THE NEWS

National Drive Electric Week kicked off with car show, forum in Omaha

Chinh Doan, KETV

OMAHA, Neb. — Once considered the cars of the future, electric vehicles are now more affordable and commonly seen on the road. Saturday’s inaugural event in Omaha made up of a showcase of electric vehicles and a forum in Omaha kicked off National Drive Electric Week.

Read the entire KETV transcript or watch the video here.

An infrastructure for charging electric vehicles takes shape

The Economist

A NEW phrase, “range anxiety”—the fear that an electric vehicle (EV) will run out of power before it reaches a charging-point—entered the Oxford English Dictionary in 2013. At the time a Nissan LEAF, the world’s best-selling EV, could travel only 120km between charges. A car with a full tank of fuel will travel 650-800km between refills. A motorist relying on batteries has to find a public charger, a rare sight in 2013, or plug in at home to cover the same distance. Range anxiety has not gone away as EVs have advanced. But the problem now feels much more soluble. Read more here.

Illustration by Claudio Munoz

The Auto Industry Can’t Ignore The Electric Vehicle Revolution Any Longer

By Jack Perkowski, Forbes

As automakers gather at the Frankfurt Auto Show next Thursday, an unprecedented transformation of the $1.8 trillion auto industry is already underway, whether it has been fully embraced by the industry or not. In addition to the new models and concept cars that will be on display at the show, the proverbial elephant will also be in the room, or convention hall, as you like. At Frankfurt this year, the impending threat of electric vehicles (EVs) to the internal combustion engine (ICE) will be on everyone’s mind. Continue reading.

Photo: Nissan unveiled its new Leaf model, the next evolution of the zero-emission electric vehicle, on September 6, 2017 as it seeks to battle off competitors in a sector it once pioneered. Credit: Kazuhiro Nogi / AFP / Getty Images

MORE EV NEWS

State’s Low-Income Community Solar Demo Serves As A National Model

By Joseph Bebon, Solar Industry Magazine

The Colorado Energy Office (CEO) and nonprofit solar installer GRID Alternatives Colorado have announced the completion of a two‐year partnership focused on demonstrating the benefits of community solar for low‐income communities across the state. In 2015, CEO granted GRID $1.2 million to work with rural electric cooperatives and municipal utilities to develop accessible, affordable community solar models that provide meaningful bill savings to subscribed customers and reduce household energy burden.

In Colorado, approximately 30% of households – many located in rural areas – are considered energy burdened, meaning they pay more than 4% of their income on utility bills. Of that 30% in Colorado, 11% are considered energy impoverished, paying more than 10% of their income on utility bills. Continue reading.

Photo Credit: GRID Alternatives