National Drive Electric Week aims to educate people about driving electric vehicles

Published: Sep. 22, 2022 at 6:51 AM EDT
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MONTGOMERY, Ala. (WSFA) - This week is National Drive Electric Week, which works to raise awareness about the benefits of electric vehicles. Alabama’s first-ever electric vehicle summit is taking place in Birmingham Thursday to provide important information about EV-related topics.

The Alabama Clean Fuels Coalition is a partner in organizing the Drive Electric Summit and promoting the state’s Drive Electric Initiative, along with coordinating advanced technology vehicle activities in Alabama.

“People have a lot of questions about EVs and what you read on the internet, or what you see every day on the news may not really be how that translates for you and your own situation,” said Michael Staley, President of the Alabama Clean Fuels Coalition. “And when we hold events, like during National Drive Electric Week, it gives citizens the opportunity to come out and learn from the best teachers who are EV owners themselves, about what it’s like to actually own an EV in Alabama.”

Earlier this year, the Alabama Department of Economic and Community Affairs launched the “Drive Electric Alabama” initiative because the state recognized more and more auto manufacturers are making significant investments in electric vehicles, that more people are buying them and driving them, and it must take steps to make sure those cars have a place to recharge on the road.

Alabama also recognizes how recruiting more electric vehicle drivers could have big pay-offs in the end.

“It has benefits for our state from a manufacturing perspective. When these EVs are successful, our automakers are going to be successful. And that’s going to lead to more jobs and better economic opportunities for communities across the state. Also, when someone stops to charge their car while they’re driving, they also spend money. And when they spend money, they leave behind that revenue that we depend on two basic functions of government are supported by that revenue. And that’s really important for people to understand that the number of EVs that are driving through the state is just as important as the number of EVs registered in the state,” Staley said.

“I would also think it’s important for people to know that when Mercedes announced that they were going to manufacture EVs in Alabama and make batteries in Bibb County, that was 240 days into President Trump’s presidency,” Staley added. “So, sometimes people feel like this is a politically angled endeavor and that it’s only because of the Biden administration. I think it’s important for people to know that, you know, even President Trump was supportive of the automotive manufacturing transformation to EVs and all of our nation’s manufacturers are really heavily invested in this technology.”

Staley went on to say if you really have questions about driving and buying an electric vehicle, don’t just take the information you hear on a newscast. Find information about events and opportunities to see them and talk to people who already own them, and read up on the state’s electric vehicle infrastructure plan.

You can find all of that information at this website.

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