Bring Plug-Ins to Your Community Soonest: Project Get Ready Tools
- We've brought you progress reports on the Rocky
Mountain Institute's "Smart Garage" program to
accelerate adoption of plug-in cars. Now RMI
describes the just-launched Project Get Ready as
"an initiative aimed at preparing communities for
plug-in vehicles, including full battery
electric, plug-in hybrid electric, and converted
hybrid or internal combustion vehicles." We've
been involved all along -- and again it's as if
we've just received massive reinforcements.
(Shortly after it goes out on email, this posting
will also be viewable at
http://www.calcars.org/news-archive.html -- there
you can add CalCars-News to your RSS feed.)
PGR's first partners (Portland, Indianapolis area
and Raleigh/Triangle), the involvement of
automakers (Ford, GM and Nissan)and
consumer-focused companies (Procter & Gamble and
Walmart), and its technical advisory group (see
below), all confirm how broadly gathering around
what RMI calls "xEVs" -- PHEVs and EVs. We
encourage you to go to the website to learn more
and to forward this message to active people around the country and the world.
"STRETCH GOAL:" 2% BY 2015: Recall that the Obama
Administration aims for ONE MILLION PLUG-IN
VEHCLES BY 2015. This program's optimistic upside
would bring us about SIX MILLION. It aims to
enlist 20 cities/regions in the near-term to
start creating the breakthrough actions,
partnerships and incentives that we've seen the
San Francisco Bay Area pioneering. (There will be
NO LOSERS if we get a 20-player race!)
BELOW YOU'LL FIND: brief description, list of
advisors, launch press release, and Top 15
Actions for Community Leaders -- in business,
government, civic groups, education and beyond.
TOOLS: http://www.projectgetready.com includes an
innovative interface to its information: a
quick-answer database where you click on a "pain
point" (problem/obstacle), primary actor, or
general strategy or action and get a list of
"readiness activities" people are working on --
"as well as some clever ideas that no one has yet
implemented." You can also view or download the
database of responses as a spreadsheet. IT'S ALL OPEN SOURCE.
ACTIONS: Those who visit the site are invited to
get involved: 1. Send ideas 2. Become a technical
adviser 3. Become a sponsor -- and, of course, 4.Recruit a team in your city.
ADVISOR LIST (RMI notes "Technical advisors have
participated in the conversations that informed
the Project Get Ready menu. They do not endorse
RMI or the findings of the menu." Most of them
attended the "design charrette" in Portland that
we reported in on CalCars-News last October.
A123 Systems * AeroVironment Inc. * Austin Energy
* Bonneville Power Administration * Bright
Automotive * Calcars * Coulomb Technologies *
Duke Energy * EDS (an HP company) * Electric
Power Research Institute * Ford * General Motors*
Google * Gridpoint * Hymotion * Johnson Controls
* Nissan * National Renewable Energy Lab *
Procter & Gamble * Pacific Gas & Electric *
Portland Gas & Electric * Plug in America *
Portland State University * Progress Energy *
Project Better Place * San Diego Gas & Electric *
University of California at Berkeley * Walmart
PRESS RELEASE: Rocky Mountain Institutes Project
Get Ready prepares the nation for the electric
vehicle transition with 20 pioneering cities.
Ready, Set, GO! RMIs Mobility and Vehicle
Efficiency Team (MOVE) to collaborate with cities
and technical experts to create a prioritized
menu of strategies that will encourage adoption
of plug-in vehicles. Check out
http://www.projectgetready.com for our menu and more information.
Snowmass CO, February 24, 2009 -- Rocky Mountain
Institute (RMI) today announced the launch of
Project Get Ready, an initiative that emerged
from Octobers Smart Garage Summit (see
http://move.rmi.org/smart-garage.html for more)
and aims to help communities prepare for and
welcome plug-in vehicles including full battery
electric, plug-in hybrid electric, and converted
hybrid or internal combustion vehicles. Today
they launch the initiative, including the website
http://www.projectgetready.com and a menu
listing the actions that communities must take to
be truly ready for the plug-in transition.
Many communities are working to accelerate the
adoption of plug-in vehicles. These pioneering
communities do not yet have a way to share best
practices and lessons learned. Moreover,
automakers have no way to find all the places
that are working to get ready for plug-in
vehicles, and evaluate their progress and
consumer interest. This missing connection has
been cited by automakers as a critical barrier to
committing to higher plug-in vehicle production.
Project Get Ready will collaborate with targeted
communities that have started convening local
players to develop and implement plug-in adoption
plans, utilizing RMIs universally recognized
convening power, as well as detailed technical analysis.
Community members in Portland, Oregon;
Indianapolis, Indiana; and Raleigh, North
Carolina soon expanding to the Triangle region
have already agreed to work with RMIs Project
Get Ready. Project manager and MOVE Consultant
Laura Schewel says, These pioneering communities
represent widely different locations,
demographics, economies and cultures, proving
that plug-in vehicles will be an important transformation across the nation.
Schewel continued, plug-in vehicles are a
revolution for the consumer and will transform
the way we move from place to place, and the way
we think about using energy. But each community
is unique--they have different commuting
patterns, parking concerns, demographics, local
businesses, and cultures. Instead of battling
this diversity, Project Get Ready welcomes it,
allowing communities to get ready in their own
way. I think this approach will lead to a faster
and better arrival for plug-in vehicles and I am
thrilled to have Portland, Indianapolis, and
Raleigh in the conversation. With this project,
we can help get the nation to President Obamas
goal of 1 million plug-ins by 2015 and maybe even beat it.
Paul Mitchell, of the Central Indiana Corporate
Partnership, highlighted the economic development
opportunity xEVs offer, saying, We see the
creation of an xEV ecosystem as an economic
development opportunity. Not only can we deliver
a more efficient transportation solution but our
workforce can develop and manufacture the vehicle
and smartgrid technologies needed to make the system work.
Pete Barkey of General Motors highlighted the
need for public-private partnership to introduce
and promote plug-in vehicles, saying, cars dont
necessarily sell themselves, especially with new,
unfamiliar and often expensive technology. Our
best chance of successfully making the transition
from gasoline-powered vehicles to
electrically-driven vehicles is to work with
communities to help them become plug-in vehicle
friendly. Organizations like Rocky Mountain
Institute are helping to create a roadmap for
regions around the country to become plug-in ready.
Mayor Charles Meeker of the City of Raleigh said
that, The Triangle area is proud to be the
leader on the East Coast in preparing for the
plug-in electric and hybrid-electric revolution.
We are delighted to be partnering with Progress
Energy, Advanced Energy and Rocky Mountain
Institute to make Project Get Ready happen here.
Project Get Ready is in harmony with the City of
Raleighs mission statement. It focuses on 21st
century environmental, cultural, and economic sustainability.
We think widespread adoption of electric vehicles
can strengthen our industry, address climate
change, and reduce our dependence on foreign
oil, said Joe Barra, director of customer energy
resources for Portland General Electric. PGE is
teaming up with business customers, the state of
Oregon, auto manufacturers, and local governments
to help develop industry standards and install
and test charging stations, and were
enthusiastic about the work the Rocky Mountain
Institute is doing to help utilities and cities
around the country coordinate their efforts and
learn from one anothers experience.
ACTIONS: For Project Get Ready, RMI is specifically:
* TODAY, launching a dynamic menu of strategic
actions that city and regional leaders can enact
to be a plug-in pioneer, based on input from
technical advisers and cities already engaged in
implementing plug-ins. In this menu, RMI will
analyze the business case for each action from
the perspective of several key stakeholders (city
govt, employers, consumers, etc.). The top 15
are listed at the end of this release.
* TODAY, launching a web database of all national
(and some international) plug-in readiness activities.
* Work one-on-one with at least three cities on
creating their readiness coalitions and charters.
Portland, Indianapolis Area, and Raleigh/Triangle will be the first three.
* Convene at least 20 cities as well as technical
players regularly to discuss their lessons
learned and best practices, and report these
conversations on our website and materials. Some
of our partner cities will have their own plans
underway, others will be starting from the ground up.
* Provide a benchmark that will allow
cities/regions to prove that they are ready for
mass adoption of PHEVs/EVs, and have taken
meaningful steps to support this critical green
technology (this may take the form of a seal of
approval or certification like the LEED system that gauges readiness).
* Document the progress made by participant
cities in order to help quantify future demand
and make it more transparent to industry (how
much, where, and what type of support to expect) for PHEVs/EVs.
RMIs MOVE team is currently in the process of
selecting more participant cities that seek to
lead the charge toward the electric
revolution. The project will be entirely open to
the public, and can be followed by the
initiatives website at http://www.projectgetready.com
ABOUT RMI: Rocky Mountain Institute is an
independent, nonpartisan, entrepreneurial,
nonprofit think-and-do tank. It fosters the
efficient and restorative use of resources to
make the world secure, just, profitable, and
life-sustaining. For more information, visit
http://www.move.rmi.org [(More about RMI: it's
also known as the organization founded by
visionary/physicist Amory Lovins. He and RMI
originated and have broadly promulgated concepts
like the soft energy path, elegant frugality,
natural capitalism, the negawatt, tunneling
through the cost barrier, abundance by design,
and so many others.You may recall that RMI
spinoff Hypercar co-sponsored the CalCars
founding meeting in 2002 -- see photo at our "About" page).
TOP 15 ACTIONS FOR COMMUNITY LEADERS--IN
BUSINESS, GOVERNMENT, CIVIC GROUPS, EDUCATION,
AND BEYOND--TO TAKE TO BE PLUG-IN READY
15 Must Have Actions* Suggested stretch
target: 2% of registered vehicles by the end of 2015.
Barrier: Not enough cars in the pipeline, OEMs
need proof of future consumer demand
1. Corporate/city/state fleets commit to buy a
certain number of plug-ins (RFPs for major purchases or conversions).
2. Stakeholder group provides a place for
interested consumers/fleets to register early,
and put cash down to reserve plug-ins (cash used for readiness where possible).
Barrier: How can we manage this as a multi-sector, city-wide project?
3. Create collaborative stakeholder group
within the community to help regulatory,
commercial, and community interests align. Sign
on to a clear regional plan (based on this
menu!). Plan should give equal consideration to conversions.
4. Have one champion whose job it is to keep
this group moving forward, who has authority
Barrier: How can we bring down upfront costs for consumers?
5. Work with banks and dealers to offer
low-interest loans for plug-ins, based on
projected lower operating costs from gas savings.
6. Bundle all key incentives at vehicle point
of purchase (home charger vouchers, rebates, etc.)
Barrier: Consumer hesitation at diving into a new paradigm for mobility
7. Perks: access to High Occupancy Vehicle
(HOV) lanes, free tolls/downtown parking, reserved airport parking.
8. Create consumer, city government, local
business and utility education plans including
test drives and quick lease options to
individual and fleet consumers as well as high profile drivers.
9. Reduced (or free) electricity rates for charging.
Barrier: Red tape around infrastructure installation
10. Fast-track permitting for charging stations.
11. Ensure new and reconstruction/renovation
building codes support the operation of plug-ins.
Barrier: What if these cars exacerbate my peak load?
12. Tie provisions of free home and public
charge spots, as well as free or cheaper
electricity, to either utility override power or no charge times.
Barrier: Who will pay for infrastructure?
13. Local employers/retailers provide some charge stations at parking decks.
14. Install public charge spots in
high-traffic zones and parking areas, either with
public money (via utility or gov't for the first
2% of vehicles) or private money that uses the stations to market.
15. Provide affordable and available--or
free--Level 2 home-charger/driveway circuit installation.
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Felix Kramer fkramer@...
Founder California Cars Initiative
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