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Do You Know What a Difference You are Making?

Yes, I am talking about you.

By you, I mean all the people who are actively working in our network to create sustainable transportation. This does not mean just our heroes like Chris Paine, Alexandra Paul, Gadget, Paul Scott, Christine Dzilvelis (Alt Car Expo) and Rick Sikes. I am talking about our whole group.

 

It turns out that the people at EVS 26 and in Sacramento are watching and studying us.

 

Here is how this came to light. EVS 26 opened with an Industry Executive Panel with top level people including Chris Woodyard of USA Today as Moderator, Ted Craver Chairman President & CEO of Edison International, Daryl Dulaney President & CEO of Siemens Industry, Tony Posawatz Vehicle Line Director for the Chevrolet Volt at General Motors and JB Straubel CTO of Tesla Motors. Mr. Woodyard was creating a great in-depth discussion about EVs and their potential that was producing lots of interesting possibilities from the panel. Deep well informed people in positions of influence. He asked the panel a question along the lines of

 

“How is all this working out in the real world?”

 

The person who took the question was the CEO of Siemens Industry. Siemens is one of the huge players in all this with major commitments to charging and vehicle technology. He answered saying something along the lines of

 

“Well of course when we look at the real world we look at what we call the inside the 405 area along with Santa Barbara.”

 

Once being stunned and amazed passed it was clear that he was talking about US. It is
the people in our network that are one of the top groups for getting this done on the planet!

 

As the event continued, it became apparent that the hands-on knowledge that so many of us have built up was what these people were looking to figure out. Some of them were getting pretty good in their knowledge and many of them had the kind of thinking that we worked through several years ago.

 

This revelation is something that we can take to heart and be encouraged that we are in fact making a difference. The models we are creating can be proliferated far and wide. The people at EVS are an international group so our participation would have moved things forward at that level. Even if you were not at the event, the things you have helped with over the years would have been represented and passed on to this larger audience.

 

One of the exciting things happening is the state level participation in building the EV world. This is happening through a program called the Plug In Collaborative. A recent meeting in Santa Barbara reinforced this idea as it was clear that our fellow advocates to the north had been giving good input to that program as had key players from our group including Enid Joffe. One of the state level people at the workshop was involved with training and policy development. He mentioned they were wrapping up a significant study about what happens when a large number of EVs are brought into a specific area. When asked what area they were studying the answer was Southern California meaning our group and or our kindred spirits in San Diego.

 

Further proof that this is the case has come out of a recently released report called the EV City Casebook. This was produced as a joint effort of the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development/International Energy Agency the Rocky Mountain Institute and several other agencies. You can download a copy from www.rmi.org.

 

This report shows some of the most active EV Cities around the world. You may be very surprised by what you learn. Bear in mind that this report is for the City and not the Metro area. That would probably look even more amazing.

 

City

Number of EVs

 

Amsterdam

750

 

Barcelona

480

 

Berlin

350

 

Hamburg

350

 

Helsinki

120

 

Netherlands total

1124

 

Brabant Stad Netherland

755

City with most EVs in Netherlands

Stockholm

100

 

Kanagawa Prefecture Japan

2183

twice the population of LA

Shanghai

1633

 

Goto Islands, Nagasaki

155

 

Los Angeles

2000

 

New York City

238

 

North East England

150

 

Portland

1300

 

 

Clearly this is not comprehensive as London, San Francisco and Seattle are missing to name but three. All of these would have substantial numbers. But still, it seems like we deserve some pretty real ata boys and girls.

 

The take home message on this was that by working together as we have been we are making a real difference. Lets keep building on that.

 

There are articles in this newsletter with suggestions and concerns we can address to keep this momentum going. The one thing we can do to increase the results and the impact is to consider increasing the level of organization that we are using. You are invited to join that dialogue by communicating your interest back to us. main@sustainableclub.org 805-652-1482.

 

 

This article was written by Russell Sydney

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Sustainable Transport Club, 268 W Santa Barbara St, Santa Paula, CA 93060Copyright Speakers Press September 2012.  All rights reserved.You are authorized to electronically forward all or part provided this copyright notice and the authors name is included, except as noted above.