We have covered a couple of aspects of modern automobile technology lately, specifically driverless cars and car hacking. These issues both have an international impact on driving in general. Today, however, we want to share some auto information that has both a local and an international flavor. It is also very good news for Portland EV owners who have bought into the savings on fuel costs that is the main benefit to individuals that own a plug-in electric vehicle (EV).
Portland International Airport (PDX) has more EV charging stations than any other US airport
Portland International Airport (PDX) has installed 48 electric vehicle chargers, the most of any airport in the country. Most, 42, are located in the economy lot. The other six are located in the main garage.
The 42 Powerpost EV charging stations in the economy lot are commercial electric vehicle charging stations (EVSEs) designed and manufactured by Telefonix® Inc., a technology design and manufacturing company that creates product solutions for highly regulated industries.
Bill Williams, Business Development Manager for Telefonix, EVSE Division commented:
This installation makes a huge statement. The electric vehicle movement is gaining steam and will continue to do so. Facilities like PDX are acknowledging this growing community and sending a signal that they support those who are embracing electric vehicles by installing stations for both airport employees and travelers.
The EVSE stations chosen by PDX are designed to have an integrated, retractable cord reel which reduces tripping hazard and makes them a safer option. In addition their low level current requirement and efficient use of energy are ideal for the type of long-dwell parking that is typical at airports and workplaces.
More powerful chargers are faster but often require costly upgrades to the electrical supply. Consequently the low-current requirements of Level 1 Powerpost chargers allowed PDX to install more charging stations which is god news for Portland's EV drivers. Level 1 charging enables EV drivers to recover about 5 miles for every hour they are plugged in. A typical commute of twenty miles is recovered in about 4 hours at a cost to the facility of less than 75 cents.
Even better news for employees and visitors to Portland International Airport is that the EV charging stations are free to use. Vince Granato, Port of Portland chief operations officer had this to say:
We are excited to support our travelers and employees with these new EV charging stations. Voted America's Best Airport in 2013, 2014 and 2015 in Travel + Leisure's Reader Survey, we take pride in delivering a memorable and positive experience to those who use our facilities. The installation of EV charging stations is one of our many environmental initiatives, which are central to how we do business and serve as good community stewards.
Tax Credits for Electric Vehicles in Oregon and Washington
While obviously good news for those who are already owners of electric vehicles the fact that PDX is offering free charging stations might not be quite enough to convince owners of conventional automobiles to make the switch to an EV. This is because, despite the savings on fuel the initial cost is seen by many as being prohibitive. It is worth noting however that both Oregon and Washington states offer tax credits to qualified plug-in electric drive motor vehicles:
A tax credit is available for the purchase of a new qualified plug-in electric drive motor vehicle that draws propulsion using a traction battery that has at least five kilowatt-hours (kWh) of capacity, uses an external source of energy to recharge the battery, has a gross vehicle weight rating of up to 14,000 pounds, and meets specified emission standards. The minimum credit amount is $2,500, and the credit may be up to $7,500, based on each vehicle's traction battery capacity and the gross vehicle weight rating.