Originally published in the ECOreport
A new study from Southwest Energy Efficiency Project (SWEEP) focuses on Economic and Air Quality Benefits of EVs in Nevada. The benefits range from improved air quality to more jobs and a decrease in the need to import gasoline. Nevadans spend over $5 billion on imported gasoline every year. Some of this can be replaced by locally produced energy using solar and geothermal energy. In his study, Economic and Air Quality Benefits of Electric Vehicles in Nevada, Mike Salisbury lays out a series of recommendations to spur the adoption of EVs.
- Rebates for the purchase or lease of an EV or installation of an EV charging station
- Allowing charging station owners to resell electricity to EV owners
- Increased usage of EVs by Government transportation fleets
- Statewide funding of of charging stations, financed by EV charging fees
- An EV registration fee that ensures EV owners pay their share of roadway maintenance costs
Salisbury notes that in SWEEPS’s recent evaluation of government policies encouraging EV adoption, Nevada received a “C,” Colorado received an “A-,” and Utah a “B+.” This corresponds to the sales in these three states.
If Nevada’s EV sales reach 15.4% of the annual sales by 2030, that could translate into 50,000 jobs.
The average EV owner could save between $1,000 and $1,300 in saved gasoline costs. Salisbury calculated the average Chevy Volt or Nissan Leaf owner’s investment will be paid back in 4-5 years. This is based on the idea that the average EV delivers what would be the cost equivalent of 60 cents a gallon.
His calculations are based on the Leaf’s current 70 mile range, not the 150 miles that are already possible (though not accessible though the market).
If several EVs are delivering 200 miles per charge by 2020, as is expected, this would further reduce the payback period and increase the potential economic benefits of owning an EV.
In addition, EVs release far less pollutants than conventional vehicles. A Nissan Leaf has 99% less VOCs, 58% less greenhouse gases, and 99% less carbon monoxide. While the percentages are less, all EVs have less pollutants than gas cars.
Salisbury notes that, “Reduction of all these pollutants provides public health benefits to the region by reducing respiratory ailments, especially in vulnerable populations such as children and the elderly.”
EVs will become even “cleaner” after 2025, when the last of Nevada’s coal plants is retired.
(All images taken from Economic and Air Quality Benefits of Electric Vehicles in Nevada)
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