U.S. Cities Shop for $10 Billion Worth of Electric Vehicles
Dozens of U.S. cities are willing to buy $10 billion of electric cars and trucks to show skeptical automakers there’s demand for low-emission vehicles. Thirty cities including New York and Chicago jointly asked automakers for the cost and feasibility of providing 114,000 electric vehicles, including police cruisers, street sweepers and trash haulers, said Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti, who is coordinating the effort. That would be comparable to about 72 percent of total U.S. plug-in sales last year.
While urban leaders want more low-emission vehicles to ease the role city traffic plays in altering the climate, automakers say there aren’t enough buyers. They also have advocated for relaxing rules on traditional fuel vehicles. The initiative is still in the early stages. The cities have taken what’s typically the first step in a formal bidding process by inviting manufacturers to outline plans to supply them. Plus, some cities are asking about vehicles that don’t exist yet, such as electric fire engines and heavy-duty trucks.
Tail-pipe fumes are crucial in the fight to stop global warming. Emissions from cars and trucks became the largest U.S. source of greenhouse gases last year, surpassing power plants for the first time since 1979. “Now more than ever there is a need for cities’ leadership on climate,” Daniel Zarrilli, New York City’s senior director of climate policy and programs, said in an interview. “We really want to send a message that there is a growing market for electric vehicles — regardless of what is happening in D.C.”
Read the entire article on Bloomberg New Energy Finance.