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CEO DATELINE – Energy industry, environmentalists celebrate 1 million electric vehicles sold

Dec. 3, 2018
By Walt Williams

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Two organizations that have frequently clashed over energy policy recently joined together to celebrate the sale of 1 million electric vehicles in the U.S.

The Electric Energy Institute held an event Friday highlighting the milestone at the Newseum in Washington, D.C. The figure is based on research by EEI and its foundation, which also forecasts that another million electric vehicles will be on U.S. roads by 2021.

“The future of electric transportation is evolving rapidly, with more than 1 million EVs on our nation’s roads today,” EEI President Tom Kuhn said in a statement. “The 1 million EV milestone could not have been reached without partnerships and collaboration among all stakeholders including electric companies, automakers, environmental organizations, infrastructure providers, regulators and policymakers.”

To highlight those partnerships, Sierra Club attorney Joe Halso was among the speakers featured at Friday’s event. The Sierra Club and EEI have battled in recent years over the former’s attempts to close down coal-fired electric plants, but electric vehicles are one area where the interests of both are in alignment.

“There’s a role for utilities to play obviously in the electric [vehicle] future,” Halso said, as reported by the news site RTO Insider. “I think also in a world … with either flat or declining load growth, a strategic opportunity to electrify 250 million vehicles must look pretty good to utilities.”

Electric vehicles are championed by environmentalists because they produce fewer greenhouse gas emissions than traditional vehicles over the span of their lifetimes. Utilities believe electric vehicles will increase demand for energy because the vehicles must be regularly recharged. https://bit.ly/2U4VyRX

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