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House and Senate Unveil Electric Drive Vehicle Deployment Act of 2010

 The EV industry is about to get a big boost in the United States.  House Select Committee on Energy Independence and Global Warming Chairman Ed Markey (D-MA) and Rep. Judy Biggert (R-IL) will introduce today the Electric Drive Vehicle Deployment Act of 2010, legislation that aims to advance the widescale deployment of electric vehicles and to develop the infrastructure needed to support them, largely through the selection and creation of specific geographic areas in which government incentives and local initiative will combine to provide all of the elements of an electrified transportation system.

This legislation will apparently set up a program run by the Department of Energy to competitively award up to $1 billion each to EV-friendly regions that apply for the funds and promise to use them to subsidize consumer purchases of electric cars – to the tune of $2,000 each for up to 100,000 vehicles in each region – and to foster installation of community networks of home and commercial EV chargers.

This program is in addition to the $7,500 federal refundable income tax credit for the purchase of highway legal electric drive vehicles.  Both GM and Nissan are depending on the rebate to help defray the high initial purchase price of their respective plug-in vehicles, the Volt and Leaf.

Other countries have already adopted this type of legislation and it is important both for energy security and international competitiveness that the United States do the same.  This legislation is a by-partisan effort so hopefully it will not fall prey to Republican “anti-legislative progress of any kind” politics.

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