EV Owners Looking Forward to an Electrically Charged New York
Written by Kate Simms
The plan for electric-vehicle integration in New York City is kind of a big deal. A 2010 report by PlanNYC, the city's comprehensive substitutability plan, explains the strategy to produce 30 percent less greenhouse gases by 2030 (compared to 2005 levels), and more than 44 percent of that reduction will be transportation emissions. The 2010 initiative hopes to reduce the amount of automobiles in the city while increasing public transportation, bicycling and walking.
This year, during his State of the City address, Mayor Bloomberg announced a plan to pilot EV charging stations throughout the city. He said his office will coordinate with City Council ensuring that 20 percent of any new public parking spots will be EV friendly.
There are currently 220 charging stations, 120 of which are for the city's own fleet. And there are an expected 400 more stations to be put in by April, according to Green Car Reports.
Over the past three months, NYC has seen a 76 percent increase in electric vehicle adoption, according to Green Car Reports. In turn, the city has made additional commitments to EV integration. According to nyc.gov, EVs make up some of the city's police, fire, sanitation and transportation vehicles. The city is slated to buy 50 Chevrolet Volts, 10 Ford Transit Connects and is testing some Navistar trucks.
In addition, the five boroughs of New York have registered about 2,000 electric vehicles. Because New York City drivers don't have home parking, they rely on commercial garages and street parking. With 10,000 new spaces dedicated to car charging, consumers in the market for a car might just be more open to an electric variety. Maybe it's a good time to sell your gas-guzzling money-sucking vehicle, find a mover at uShip and start living a more environmentally conscious lifestyle.
Good Fit for You?
So what's an ideal electric vehicle to "fit" the New York City lifestyle? The Honda Fit's initial reviews are positive. Much like the gas version, the Honda Fit has a lower center of gravity, so it's agile and fun to drive. The interior offers space for five passengers. To create a larger cargo area, the seats can fold for an airier cabin. With bio-fabric seats, climate control and a stellar navigation system, you might not know you were saving the earth when zipping through the streets of Greenwich Village. The engine produces 106 lb-ft of torque at 6600 rpm.
Other options include the Nissan LEAF, Ford Focus Electric, Toyota RAV 4 EV and the Smart ED, to name a few.
Northeast Regional Partnership
To add to the excitement, it doesn't stop in New York. The city is partnering with Philadelphia and Boston to share knowledge and exchange information on electricity usage and building codes needed to accommodate EVs. Traveling between the three cities in an electric vehicle will be done with confidence, considering they'll have readily available charging stations. The three cities make up the Northeast Regional Partnership.
Proposals are in place, but not confirmed. It seems NYC is going to see considerable growth of plug-in vehicles over the next decade. What a cleaner city it will be.
Kate Simms is an activist, grant writer and supporter or several green initiatives. She lives and writes in Maryland.
Major move forward for UK’s nascent marine energy sector
Although the industry is small and the technologies are limited, marine-based energy systems look to be taking off as “the world’s most powerful tidal turbine” begins grid-connected power generation at the European Marine Energy Centre.
At around 74 metres long, the turbine single-handedly holds the potential to supply the annual electricity demand to approximately 2,000 homes within the UK and offset 2,200 tonnes of CO2 per year.
Orbital Marine Power, a privately held Scottish-based company, announced the turbine is set to operate for around 15 years in the waters surrounding Orkney, Scotland, where the 2-megawatt O2 turbine weighing around 680 metric tons will be linked to a local on-land electricity network via a subsea cable.
How optimistic is the outlook for the UK’s turbine bid?
Described as a “major milestone for O2” by CEO of Orbital Marine Power Andrew Scott, the turbine will also supply additional power to generate ‘green hydrogen’ through the use of a land-based electrolyser in the hopes it will demonstrate the “decarbonisation of wider energy requirements.”
“Our vision is that this project is the trigger to the harnessing of tidal stream resources around the world to play a role in tackling climate change whilst creating a new, low-carbon industrial sector,” says Scott in a statement.
The Scottish Government has awarded £3.4 million through the Saltire Tidal Energy Challenge Fund to support the project’s construction, while public lenders also contributed to the financial requirements of the tidal turbine through the ethical investment platform Abundance Investment.
“The deployment of Orbital Marine Power’s O2, the world’s most powerful tidal turbine, is a proud moment for Scotland and a significant milestone in our journey to net zero,” says Michael Matheson, the Cabinet Secretary for Net-Zero, Energy and Transport for the Scottish Government.
“With our abundant natural resources, expertise and ambition, Scotland is ideally placed to harness the enormous global market for marine energy whilst helping deliver a net-zero economy.
“That’s why the Scottish Government has consistently supported the marine energy sector for over 10 years.”
However, Orbital Marine CEO Scott believes there’s potential to commercialise the technology being used in the project with the prospect of working towards more efficient and advanced marine energy projects in the future.
“We believe pioneering our vision in the UK can deliver on a broad spectrum of political initiatives across net-zero, levelling up and building back better at the same time as demonstrating global leadership in the area of low carbon innovation that is essential to creating a more sustainable future for the generations to come.”
The UK’s growing marine energy endeavours
This latest tidal turbine project isn’t a first for marine energy in the UK. The Port of London Authority permitted the River Thames to become a temporary home for trials into tidal energy technology and, more recently, a research project spanning the course of a year is set to focus on the potential tidal, wave, and floating wind technology holds for the future efficiency of renewable energy. The research is due to take place off of the Southwest coast of England on the Isles of Scilly