New York City skyline (by Flickr user AngMoKio)Enlarge Photo
By 2025, New York City could deploy a vast fleet of electric cars, under a new plan announced by Mayor Bill de Blasio.
It calls for replacing large numbers of municipal vehicles with electric cars, potentially giving New York the largest electric municipal fleet in the country.
That would include around 2,000 city-owned cars used by agencies like the Parks and Recreation Department.
DON'T MISS: Which City Will Have Most Hybrids, Electric Cars In Its Fleet? (Nov 2014)
The electric cars would make up about half the city's non-emergency fleet, according to The New York Times (subscription required).
The fleet would likely be a mix of all-electric cars like the Nissan Leaf, and extended-range or plug-in hybrid models, including the Chevrolet Volt.
A large network of charging stations will also be required to support these vehicles.
2016 Nissan LeafEnlarge Photo
Officials hope fuel savings will offset much of the cost of getting the electric-car fleet up and running.
The program is expected to cut government-vehicle emissions 50 percent by 2025.
ALSO SEE: Chevrolet Volts In Fleet Use: Might As Well Not Have A Plug (Aug 2014)
Electric cars would be introduced gradually, replacing older vehicles as they're retired.
But other aspects of the plan still need to be worked out.
Charging stations will require additional space in a city where real estate is always at a premium.
2016 Chevrolet VoltEnlarge Photo
Deploying Chevy Volts or other cars with supplementary gasoline engines would help, but they still need to be recharged regularly in order to gain any efficiency benefits.
The program will not include police and fire vehicles, about make up about half of New York City's 11,000-unit municipal fleet.
MORE: NYC Issues Roadmap For Electrifying One Third Of Taxis By 2020 (Jan 2014)
In addition to purchasing electric cars, New York may also upgrade some garbage trucks with fuel-saving features, like engine start-stop systems.
If the city government moves forward with Mayor de Blasio's plan, New York will join other U.S. cities attempting to cut emissions from municipal vehicles.
Cities like Los Angeles and Indianapolis hope replacing large numbers of municipal vehicles with electric cars will cut emissions, as well as fuel costs.
These initiatives could get significant numbers of electric cars on the road quicker than if emphasis was placed solely on individual private vehicles.