Green Mountain Power (GMP) and Saint Michael's College announced this year the unveiling of a public electric vehicle (EV) charging station on the Saint Michael's campus. The new station is a partnership between GMP and Saint Michael's and will allow drivers to charge a vehicle at no cost for the first year.
"We are very excited to launch this new EV charging station in partnership with Saint Michael's College," said Mary Powell, President and CEO of Green Mountain Power. "At GMP we are committed to a triple bottom-line of cost, carbon and reliability. Building charging station infrastructure is critical for the adoption of electric vehicles. This project and others like it will also help GMP learn more about how people use electric vehicles so we can move away from fossil fuels based transportation without jeopardizing reliability and cost.”
"Saint Michael's College works continuously to nurture an ever-more sustainable environment on campus through multiple initiatives," said Saint Michael's President John J. Neuhauser. "This electric-vehicle charging station is in keeping with other efforts carried out through our buildings, our organic garden, our recycling efforts, and our extensive and ongoing sustainability programs."
GMP has also launched a new website at ev.greenmountainpower.com to share details on its charging station installations, as well as be a resource where people can learn more about plug-in electric vehicles and EV charging station infrastructure.
The Coulomb Technologies CT2100 Chargepoint charging station is located in the Klein Center parking lot just off Route 15 at the west entrance to the Saint Michael’s College campus and is compatible with all plug-in vehicles available on the market. The Chargepoint system also provides customer-oriented features such as online and smartphone directions and reservations, driver notifications of charge status and effortless charging session initiation. The system will also provide feedback so that GMP can better understand how plug-in drivers use charging stations in practice.
The station will be paired with a solar photovoltaic system placed atop Klein Center. "Not only is this an important step to encourage the adoption of electric vehicles, but it demonstrates how renewable energy fits in with new technologies to displace carbon emissions, particularly from transportation," said Powell.
It is anticipated that the electric vehicle market will grow in the coming years with more than 100 plug-in electric or hybrid models available by 2013. While the EV charging station model will be different than the traditional gas station model, as most charging takes multiple hours and will be done at home, it is expected that public charging stations will be used to "top off" vehicles to keep them highly charged and expand their range.
Green Mountain Power's environmental commitment has already inspired some electric vehicle purchases for the company. The company has three Toyota Priuses that have been converted to plug-in hybrids, as well as two GEM neighbor electric vehicles. Later this year, GMP expects the arrival of a pure electric Ford Transit Connect, a small commercial van to be used in conjunction with the deployment of GMPConnects, GMP's smart grid program. Additionally, GMP will also deploy a Posi-Plus bucket truck later this year, which will have a plug-in battery used to power jobsite operations of the bucket and boom, eliminating vehicle idling to reduce emissions, noise and cost.