This past Saturday, I attended the Harvest Energy Fair [PDF] (sponsored by the Mass. DOER) so I could network with folks and show off my new Tesla Roadster. I met with folks like Commissioner Philip Giudice, the Director of Energy Markets Vivek Mohta, and the Director of Green Business Development Linda Benevides. They were all happy to talk to me and excited to see the Roadster. I took a number of people for a quick drive and spoke at length about the car, Tesla, the Model S, etc.
I came across a UMass Lowell engineering student who’d converted a ’96 Civic to an EV for $6,000 — including the chassis! Linda also brought a Toyota Prius plug-in hybrid. Pictures are here.
I’m not versed in government at all, but have come to feel that Massachusetts has no intention of using public money (via incentives such as tax breaks or via allocating tax money towards infrastructure) to help the public adopt EV’s — it’s literally the consumer’s responsibility right now. I hope I can stand corrected or help change this attitude. The average consumer isn’t like me and it will take more than just early adopters to create critical mass. It’ll take some creative and agile thinking. This is involves brand-new and rapidly-changing infrastructure — the likes of which hasn’t been seen since we all settled on the gas station many decades ago. What kinds of things would consumers be OK with to help generate options? Tax the energy consumed to charge an EV at a public charging station? Put cheap/dumb charging stations everywhere instead of big, smart, expensive level-3 charging stations at key locations because we don’t know what things will look like in 5-10 years or how to deal with even a 1% EV market penetration? Would love comments/thoughts on this.