February 1, 2012
February NBEAA Meeting
Saturday, February 11, 2012, 10 AM - Noon
Switch Vehicles at the Blue sky Center, 6791 Sebastopol Avenue, Sebastopol, CA Come see the new Switch Vehicles 3-wheeled electric kit car getting ready for production right here in Sebastopol. Test drives will be given. See 8 minute video at http://switchvehicles.com/vehicle/gallery/ for details on the product and the company.
March NBEAA Meeting
Saturday, March 10, 2012, 10AM – Noon, location to be announced
Jenny Bard, advocacy manager for the American Lung Association in California, will discuss efforts to create a pilot peer to peer car sharing program in the Junior College neighborhood using Getaround that can serve as a model for the community to reduce car trips and greenhouse gases, save money, and promote alternative transportation options. Jenny recently leased a Nissan Leaf and has been working with Getaround to launch peer to peer car sharing in Santa Rosa.
Meetings of Interest:
· The City of Santa Rosa is accepting public comments about their Greenhouse Gas Reduction Program & Climate Action Plan at a Community Workshop being held on February 1st at the Bennett Valley Senior Center, 704 Bennett Valley Road in Santa Rosa. The meeting time is from 6:00 PM – 8:00 PM. Of interest to the NBEAA are incentives for purchasing EVs and public charging stations.
· EV International Expo in Tampa Florida, February 21st through February 23rd. For those of you who want to get some winter sun, you can take in seminars and EV related exhibits. The Expo’s website is http://www.evexpo.org/index.cfm .
NBEAA Public Charging Station Monitoring Program:
During last November’s planning meeting it was pointed out that none of the charging station locator websites accurately presented all of the charging stations in the north bay area. It was decided that the Chapter would physically check all of the public charging stations and update a website so that people driving their EVs to the north bay area would have a reliable website to plan their trip. John Palmerlee and his daughter, Ellen, have volunteered to take on this project. We are still deciding which website to update. The two leading candidates are Recargo.com and Plugshare.com. We would appreciate any recommendations that you have about which is the best website to update.
Public Charging Station Article in the PD
Check out the article in last Monday’s Press Democrat about new charging stations being installed in Sonoma County. http://www.pressdemocrat.com/article/20120123/ARTICLES/120129841. These additional charging stations should encourage people to buy an EV as well as drive their EVs to Sonoma County from other areas.
Western Automotive Journalists Symposium on Future Cars – Future Technology
On Tuesday, January 24th, the Western Automotive Journalists Association held a symposium that I attended in San Jose where journalists could hear automobile manufacturers describe what they see as the future of the automobile industry. Representatives from Chrysler, GM, Mitsubishi, Toyota and Mercedes made presentations during a panel discussion. Also, you could get rides in the iMiEv (Mitsubishi EV), the Volt, Honda CNG, and a fuel cell Mercedes. None of the manufacturers was optimistic about any alternative form of fuel for the automobile. The manufacturers all agreed that EVs and CNG fueled cars are the most likely to be adopted, yet they all agreed that they are not going to take any other form of fuel seriously until their marketing departments can confirm that the other form of fuel will get a 15% market share. Interestingly, they also, couldn’t help but discuss the future of ICE muscle cars and said that muscle cars will always be built, even though their sales are low. Representatives from Car & Driver as well as Road & Track spoke and made it clear that they are only interested in ICE powered automobiles. Funny thing is, I drove my EV to the meeting and they had no charging facilities other than 115 volt, 15 amp wall outlets. We have to keep the pressure on.