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Northeast States Unite to Build EV Infrastructure

Ten northeast states and the District of Columbia have formed the Northeast Electric Vehicle Network, to help plan for EV charging stations and infrastructure throughout the region.

The network, to be run through the states’ existing Transportation and Climate Initiative, facilitated by the Georgetown Climate Center at Georgetown University, will also promote a variety of clean vehicle and fuel types. It will work to attract public and private investment in clean vehicle infrastructure.

Already TCI has awarded a nearly $1 million Electric Vehicle Readiness Grant to the New York State Energy Research and Development Authority, to fund the development of guidelines for the siting, permitting, and installation of EV charging stations. The Georgetown Climate Center says this is a critical next step in the development of the network.

The states in the network are Connecticut, Delaware, Maryland, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island and Vermont.

TCI said the initiative’s first steps include the definition of a set of common infrastructure standards, as well as outreach to the public and private sectors, and creation of a blueprint for EV deployment.

TCI said these efforts will help the region become a leader in the deployment of clean energy vehicles. President Obama has called for one million plug-in vehicles to be on the streets nationwide by 2015, and based on population, the northeast’s contribution to that would be about 200,000 vehicles.

But so far, most of the announcements around electric vehicle deployment seem to have come from the west.

In February Ecotality started installation of more than 1,100 public charging points in Oregon, as is part of The EV Project, a federally-funded initiative which the company calls the largest rollout of EV infrastructure in U.S. history. It will see Ecotality install 14,000 chargers in 18 U.S. cities and metropolitan areas, with installations through the end of this year in Washington state, California, Arizona, Texas, Tennessee and Washington, D.C. – but no points further north or east.

Last July Nissan said the first Leafs will go to consumers in California, Washington, Oregon, Arizona and Tennessee.

The Georgetown Climate Center said about 30 percent of the northeast’s greenhouse gas emissions come from the transportation sector. TCI projects for the sector include efforts to improve the efficiency of freight movement and expand the use of innovative information and communication technologies.

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