Thoughts on ‘National Drive Electric Week’

Beginning Sept. 15th, and all throughout “National Drive Electric Week,” motorists are invited to take an electric-car test-drive.

But wait. Don’t those in charge know that there are in the U.S. a quarter-billion motor vehicles and that those 250 million (autos and trucks) – roughly three motor vehicles for every four citizens – on average, are idled (parked) 23 hours a day and that those planning to take one (or more) purely electric vehicles (EV) out for an emissions-free test spin will show up in, what else?!, gas-gulping, smoke-coughing driving machines?

And, just what is the point of this now time-tested endeavor?

Here is what Plug In America in its Aug. 26, 2014 “Record Number of Cities Observe 4th Annual National Drive Electric Week” press release made clear:

“A record number of cities—over 115 in 35 states and abroad—will observe National Drive Electric Week, Sept. 15-21, 2014. The annual event is designed to showcase the fun, convenience, clean-air benefits and cost-savings of electric vehicles through ride-and-drives and related activities taking place from Hawaii to Vermont.

“National Drive Electric Week (formerly National Plug In Day) has quadrupled in size since its 2011 launch. It is expected to draw at least 35,000 attendees this year. Many cities are participating for the first time and others are going on their fourth consecutive year. Just as U.S. plug-in vehicle sales are expected to reach their first quarter-million mark, cities will offer one-day activities or observe the celebration’s entire week, organized nationally by Plug In America, the Sierra Club and the Electric Auto Association.”

Today, as I see it, “National Drive Electric Week” is, at its very core, an electric-vehicle-driving promotional plug. Tomorrow, who knows how broad and to what extent the promotion will be.

Aiming to get people behind the wheel and at the controls under the direction of existing EV owners, “National Drive Electric Week events target people who have never driven EVs and offer ride-and-drives in every plug-in on the market. Events—all of them free—take place in nature centers, at air quality management districts, state capitals, town squares and other venues,” Plug In America explained.

For much more on this week-long event, go here.

3 thoughts on “Thoughts on ‘National Drive Electric Week’

  1. “Today, as I see it, “National Drive Electric Week” is, at its very core, an electric-vehicle-driving promotional plug.”

    You’re absolutely right! The idea of National Plug In Day is to get as many “butts in the seats” as possible. We’ve found over the years that when people get to experience this new and better way of driving, they immediately understand the benefits.

    The quality of the ride is exceptional. Even a low cost EV offers lots of power off the line, quiet and smoother than any luxury car. And if you should be so lucky to experience Tesla’s Model S, you’ll know why they call it the “best car in history”.

    But more important are the societal benefits. As the grid reaches for 90+% renewable, there will be a tremendous drop in pollution. Add to that the lack of pollution from the cars, and very quickly our environment begins to heal from the decades of dumping poison into our air and water.

    That leads to a healthier populace. Fewer people dying from beathing internal combustion and coal plant pollution.

    The security of our nation will grow stronger the more we are not reliant on foreign oil. Our $80 billion military spending for oil will beging to drop. And hopefull, no more wars for oil.

    Further, our economy will grow much stronger. Collectively, we spend over half a trillion dollars on gasoline and diesel every year. Everyone who switches to an EV will save about $1,000-$1,500 per year. They will still spend that money, but instead of filling the overflowing coffers of oil barrons, the money will be spent on local goods and services, enriching our local economies.

    So please come to the closest National Drive Electric Week event and drive these amazing cars.

  2. Yes indeed, air quality matters to many drivers. I encourage every “gas-gulping, smoke-coughing driving machine” owner to take this opportunity and see for yourself. Published opinion cannot give you the real experience. Hundreds of volunteers will be available to share their experience, “warts and all”, unvarnished, real. National Drive Electric Week is, at its core an educational opportunity without the typical auto industry promotion of their idyllic driving dream. Enjoy the event. Drive some electric cars. After that, the only opinion that matters is your own.

  3. We’re particularly pleased to to be part of National Drive Electric Week here in Tucson, Arizona, where we’ve been associated since the first National Plug In Day back in 2011. Locally, we call ours Tucson Plugs In and organizers are members of TEVA, the Tucson Electric Vehicle Association . . .

    http://www.tucsonelectricvehicle.org/

    For the 2nd year running we will be at the Bookman’s Sports Exchange, which is the location of a large solar PV array and the only Level 3 charger currently installed in Tucson. The Events page on the TEVA site gives more details . . .

    http://www.tucsonelectricvehicle.org/events.html

    And here’s the Tucson page on the NDEW site . . .

    https://driveelectricweek.org/event.php?eventid=134

    We also have a video from our 2013 event, where we witnessed the Arizona debut
    of the BMW i3 . . .

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Iffyg1aIeX8

    Each year, we also have several local solar PV installers join us, as well as a cross section of local environmental groups. This year, we are happy to have joined forces with the Tucson People’s Climate March, which will be arriving mid morning at the Sports Exchange.

    See you the morning of Sunday, September 21st in Tucson. If you can’t make it, be sure to attend another NDEW event this upcoming week near you.

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