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Monday, March 19, 2012

Get Ready Tampa Bay!

Mary Campbell
Extension Director and Urban Sustainability Agent

The Tampa Bay region is preparing for electric vehicles. Get Ready Tampa Bay is a regional collaboration with interested groups to prepare Tampa Bay for the roll-out of electric vehicles (EV). No new idea or technology is ever really simple or easy to launch. Electric cars have been around a long time and were first developed along with gasoline powered vehicles in the 1800’s. Electric vehicles did not have the speed or range of gas powered vehicles and developing the new batteries has been a challenge. With new technology and a few bright ideas, EV has come a long way since the 1800’s.

Electric vehicles are an option for improving air quality and reducing dependence on imported oil. Sailing past the gas station may sound like a great idea. Electricity is produced in the U.S. as opposed to gasoline imported by tanker or pipeline and it is less affected by the volatile world oil market. Electric vehicles run clean and produce no air-polluting emissions.

The infrastructure needed to support plug-in vehicles is beginning to pop up. Charging stations will need to become as conveniently located as gas stations are now. The national Project Get Ready is a non-profit initiative led by the Rocky Mountain Institute with a wide array of partners to help cities develop infrastructure for plug-in vehicles. Motorists will have the option to drive clean, quiet-running automobiles, get great mileage and top off the charge with a local charging station. Drivers can locate stations in the Tampa Bay area and beyond at Charge Point America.

Get Ready Tampa Bay
Florida Energy Systems Consortium-Batteries for Automobiles (pdf)
EPA Electric Vehicles Fact sheet
EPA Plug-in Hybrid Electric Vehicles


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