In 2009, the plug-in vehicle market gained unprecedented federal support. In addition to President Obama's proclamation of 1,000,000 plug-in cars by 2015, several newcomer companies, including Tesla, Fisker, A123, and Johnson Controls-Saft, received multimillion dollar grants and/or loans to accelerate production.
So - what's in store for 2010?
The Electric Drive Transportation Association (EDTA), the industry's leading network for the electric vehicle industry, has created a new "action plan" for policymakers to continue the momentum in the coming year. These goals fall under the following categories:
1. Reduce Market Hurdles for Electric Drive Technologies
* Refine and expand tax incentives for the purchase of electric vehicles
* Create tax incentives for a charging infrastructure
* Create incentives for federal, state, and municipal fleet purchases of electric vehicles
2. Expand U.S. Manufacturing Capacity
* Provide increased funding for the Department of Energy’s Advanced Technology Vehicle Manufacturing Program
* Increase access to low-cost capital for suppliers
3. Establish Coherent Regulatory Policies for Electric
* Create national standards for plug-in vehicles and recharging infrastructure
4. Accelerate Technology Breakthroughs
* Make a multi-year commitment to fund research, development, and demonstration of electric vehicles
5. Promote Public and Private Outreach and Education
* Provide credible information about the benefits, requirements, and policy incentives for electric vehicles to consumers, businesses, and state/local governments.
This action plan is quite comprehensive, but reveals the multi-stakeholder involvement that is necessary to bring a new technology to the market.
The plan is revealed just in time for the annual Electric Drive Transportation Association Conference in Washington, D.C. The conference takes place alongside the Washington D.C. Auto Show this year.
I will be in attendance and hope to bring GreenCarReports readers more juicy details from the industry leaders.
Shannon Arvizu is clean-tech spokeswoman and researcher of the Plug-In Vehicle Network at Columbia University. You can follow her at www.misselectric.com.