Throughout the month of April, the first ever annual Drive Electric Earth Day was held, with 188 events taking part across the United States, as well as Canada, the Dominican Republic, Mexico and New Zealand.
Building upon the success of National Drive Electric Week, an annual event held each September for the past eight years, Plug In America, the Sierra Club, and Electric Auto Association partnered for Drive Electric Earth Day to give communities across the U.S. and beyond more first-hand opportunities to learn about zero emission vehicles through local Earth Day events. These events celebrated the significant and wide-ranging benefits of electric vehicles (EVs), bringing together public officials, policymakers, local media, and the general public.
- 188 registered events
- More than 100,000 attendees
- More than 1,700 test rides and drives
- More than 240 event organizers and volunteers
- 44 US states
- 5 countries
Some events incorporated new, exciting local developments on the EV front, such as the installation of new electric vehicle fast chargers.
EVs reduce emissions from transportation, the leading sector contributing to carbon pollution, in addition to improving public health and providing fuel and maintenance savings for consumers. Sales of EVs in the U.S. increased 81 percent last year, and there are now approximately 50 models of EVs available, many with longer ranges at lower prices than in previous years.
“The first Drive Electric Earth Day far exceeded our expectations,” said Joel Levin, executive director of Plug In America.“Plug-in vehicle drivers love their cars because they’re better for the environment, easier to maintain, and more fun to drive. These events give those drivers the opportunity to share their enthusiasm about EVs with others.”
“We’re at a pivotal moment in electric vehicle adoption. Demand for EVs is rising, prices continue to drop, and more and more models are becoming available each year,” said Hieu Le, a campaign representative with Sierra Club’s Clean Transportation for All campaign. “Now is the time to provide more and more outreach opportunities for communities to learn about the cost-savings and climate benefits of electric vehicles, experience them first-hand, and hear directly from those that drive them and love them.”
“This was an incredible year in presenting the breadth of EVs to the public,” said Guy Hall, Director of Electric Auto Association. “Across the country, EV drivers joined existing community Earth Day events to show and demonstrate that EVs are here today, and not only are they better for the earth, they are fun to drive and cheaper to own.”
“Showcasing EVs was the highlight of our Earth Day event. Having EV owners interacting with event attendees allowed discussion and opened up dialogue to be proactive in building an alternative to fueling our vehicles with fossil fuels,” said Emily Beals, the Event Manager for the Drive Electric Earth Day event in Amador County, California.
About Plug In America: Plug In America is the nation’s leading independent consumer voice for accelerating the use of plug-in electric vehicles in the United States. Formed as a non-profit in 2008, Plug In America provides practical, objective information collected from our coalition of plug-in vehicle drivers, through public outreach and education, policy work and a range of technical advisory services. Our expertise represents the world’s deepest pool of experience of driving and living with plug-in vehicles. We drive electric. You can too. PlugInAmerica.org
About the Sierra Club: The Sierra Club is America’s largest and most influential grassroots environmental organization, with more than 3 million members and supporters. In addition to helping people from all backgrounds explore nature and our outdoor heritage, the Sierra Club works to promote clean energy, safeguard the health of our communities, protect wildlife, and preserve our remaining wild places through grassroots activism, public education, lobbying, and legal action. For more information, visit www.sierraclub.org.
About the Electric Auto Association: The Electric Auto Association (EAA) is the oldest and largest, volunteer-driven nonprofit association that promotes electric vehicle adoption across the country and the globe. Its thousands of EV owners educate and advocate for electric vehicles with public outreach throughout the year at farmer’s markets, malls, schools, libraries, businesses, and civic groups. Members in more than 80 chapters meet regularly to share the latest global and local news in the EV community. EAA provides information for local governments to increase EV adoption as well as infrastructure. www.electricauto.org
About FLO: FLO operates a complete EV charging network for drivers to plug in wherever they are – at home, at work and on the go. We provide a simple and seamless experience and are one of the largest EV charging networks in North America. www.flo.com
About Audi of America: Audi recently debuted the Audi e-tron, the brand’s first all-electric vehicle. A spacious five-seater, electric mid-sized SUV that’s well-equipped for premium buyers to go electric today, the e-tron will be the first of three battery-electric vehicles that Audi plans to debut by 2020. U.S. customers can configure and reserve their e-tron now at: www.audiusa.com/reserve.
About the Clean Vehicle Rebate Project: The Clean Vehicle Rebate Project (CVRP) promotes electric vehicle adoption in California by offering rebates of up to $7,000 for the purchase or lease of new, eligible battery electric, plug-in hybrid and hydrogen fuel cell vehicles. The Center for Sustainable Energy administers CVRP for the California Air Resources Board. CleanVehicleRebate.org