December 2016 - The Department of Energy announced $18M to accelerate development of plug-in electric vehicles (PEVs) and alternative fuels. The funds will be distributed between five different projects across the nation, including $3.9M to PacifiCorp/Rocky Mountain Power. The project will establish an interstate PEV charging network of over 1,500 miles across Utah, Idaho, and Wyoming through installation, operation, and data collection. The project will deploy ≥200 PEVs to fleet deployment partners, along with ≥13,000 PEV rentals to be used through on demand rental programs.
The WestSmartEV project is aimed to accelerate PEV adoption across the intermountain west by developing a large-scale sustainable PEV charging infrastructure network and PEV adoption programs. The focus of the program is to incentivize conversion of fleet vehicles to PEVs within the corridors and build community partnerships to ensure all efforts within the corridors are aligned with long term transportation planning. Additionally, the WestSmartEv Central task is to collect, process, and apply data to inform project reporting, develop new tools, and detail lessons learned and best practices.
The overall target of the program is to double the growth rate of PEVs in the region from 20% to 40% leading to more than 50,000 PEVs within 10 years. as shown in Fig. 2. This target corresponds to an estimated reduction of annual CO2 emissions by 251 million pounds and petroleum use reduction of 24.9 million gallons at year 10.
This is excellent news for SELECT and UPEL; it is an important award to strengthen partnerships and visibility of EVs in Utah and to increase momentum of R&D efforts for electrified roadways