When power plant heavyweight NRG Energy announced yesterday that it would invest $10 million in the rollout of the nation’s first privately-finance electric vehicle charging network it also revealed that the city it would debut in would be … Houston, Texas.This is could be the next step to saving the Earth, we will save a lot of oil.
Houston (pictured) is known as the nation’s oil capital, and as a resident, I can’t say I disagree with that assessment. It’s also in a state where oil is still cheap compared to other parts of the country, and the same is true for electricity costs. At nearly 15,000 square miles, it’s purported to be bigger than Maryland, and is known for bad traffic and long commutes. And despite its traffic and air pollution issues, Houston has been reluctant to adopt mass transit.
But NRG president and CEO David Crane tells me the company actually believes Texas is a better market for electric vehicles than it gets credit for, which I was skeptical about after test-driving the Ford Focus Electric in Dallas. In fact, Crane says they’ve been actively talking to Nissan about allocating more of its limited-supply, all-electric Leafs to Texas, which the automaker passed over when choosing its first-launch markets. (As part of the rollout, Nissan dealerships in Texas will sell NRG’s monthly charging packages to Leaf buyers).
Keep in mind that NRG is parent to Texas-based electricity retailers, Green Mountain Energy and Reliant Energy, so it has close Texas ties. Crane says he’s interested in pursuing and developing a similar network in California — after all, NRG is in the business of selling electricity, and more electric vehicles on the road means more electricity sales for power providers. All that aside, here’s Crane’s reasoning for why Texas makes sense for an electric car network:
Thursday, November 25, 2010
Texas = Electric Cars?
Hey guys, got some eco-friendly news for you today. If you live in Texas, this is affect you, unless you don't drive.