The North Carolina Plug-in Electric Vehicle (PEV) Taskforce held its fall Implementation Summit on October 24, 2013, in Conover, North Carolina, to discuss PEV deployment initiatives in the state. Guest speakers included Cornelius Willingham of Nissan North America and Daniel Witt of Tesla Motors.
Mayor Pro Tem Kyle Hayman, City of Conover, who welcomed participants to the summit, stated, “The City of Conover is pleased to host the NC PEV Conference. It is another example of the city’s willingness to embrace the future of automobiles, while being good stewards of the environment, and developing advanced manufacturing partnerships.”
More than 70 attendees gathered to learn about DC fast charging efforts from Nissan, Tesla and Brightfield Transportation Solutions (BTS). Collectively, the three organizations are installing approximately 35 DC fast chargers in North Carolina.
“Electric vehicle adoption in North Carolina moves us towards a more energy secure, economically vibrant and environmentally sound future” stated Stan Cross, Co-Founder and Principal of BTS. “This is why BTS is excited to be deploying solar-integrated Brightfield Charging Stations across the state.”
The summit also featured breakout sessions on installation initiatives, reducing barriers and capitalizing on opportunities, as well as how the Taskforce can help lead next steps, such as integration with renewable energy for charging stations and developing a recognition program for retailers that add PEV charging stations.
“The ideas generated at the summit are very exciting for North Carolina,” said Katie Drye, Project Manager, Transportation Initiatives, Advanced Energy. “One topic discussed for the Taskforce to focus on in 2014 is marketing a statewide corridor of charging infrastructure to promote range confidence and to make owning and driving a PEV in North Carolina more feasible.”
This idea is actually closer to reality than consumers may think: A representative from Tesla was able to drive a Model S from Raleigh to Conover — a 160-mile trip — by stopping to charge only once at Tesla’s new Supercharger station in Alamance Crossing Center in Burlington, North Carolina.
The summit marked the half-year point since the release of the NC PEV Readiness Plans, funded by the U.S. Department of Energy’s Clean Cities Program, in February 2013. Since then, there has been an infusion of deployment activities across the state, ranging from DC fast chargers to workplace charging.