Governor Kulongoski has created the Oregon Transportation Electrification Executive Council to be a central point of coordination of electric vehicle (EV) strategy, development and deployment for the state.
Kulongoski made the announcement at the same time that ECOtality unveiled its electric vehicle infrastructure plan for Portland, Salem, Eugene and Corvallis where the company plans to install more than 1,100 publicly available charging stations over the next several months.
“We have made great progress, coordinating across city, county and state sectors as well as private companies like ECOtality to make Oregon an entry point for transportation electrification – but we cannot stop here,” said Governor Ted Kulongoski. “This is a long-term vision, a long-term mission – and we must make a long-term commitment to not only bring this next generation of cars to our communities….but also a commitment to make this transition to cleaner cars a successful one.”
The Executive Council will consist of no more than 12 members appointed by the Governor and include representation from both the public and private sector with expertise in business development, energy policy, transportation, and sustainability.
A member of the Public Utility Commission, the Oregon Transportation Commission, the Director of the Department of Energy, the Director of Oregon Business Development Department, and the Bonneville Power Administration, or their designees will serve as ex-officio members of the Executive Council.
“This Council will serve as the primary point of contact on transportation electrification for the state, working with the public and private sector to develop a work plan for economic development opportunities and to further our coordination between state and local efforts on transportation electrification,” the Governor continued. “The Council will also identify opportunities and solutions to barriers so that we continue to ensure that Oregon remains on the cutting edge of this new technology and a leader for the rest of the nation.”
Specifically, the Council is charged to:
•Develop a work plan on how Oregon can be the leader in the new emerging electric vehicle technologies, including both introduction of vehicle and associated technology and manufacturing vehicles and components. This work plan shall also include strategies for future deployment of electric vehicles statewide;
•Provide an initial point of contact for companies that are looking to invest in Oregon jobs in the electric transportation industry, including vehicle assembly and manufacturing, charging infrastructure, information technology, and related services;
•Collaborate on existing efforts to ensure Oregon’s leadership in electric vehicles and related technologies and avoid duplication of efforts;
•Enhance state, regional and local strategic efforts to deploy electric vehicle infrastructure in Oregon;
•Facilitate development of public education and acceptance outreach campaigns to accelerate the transition to electric transportation, including education and training of Oregon’s workforce to prepare for electric vehicle infrastructure; and
•Identify opportunities and barriers to adoption and recommend policy and administrative initiatives to the Governor as needed.
For more information about the State of Oregon’s work on electric vehicles and transportation electrification, go to: http://www.oregon.gov/ODOT/HWY/OIPP/inn_ev-charging.shtml
By Margaret Bradburn
Of the Independent