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Electric Car Adoption and Texas Electricity

October 19, 2011

The old Texan stereotypes of cowboy hats and gas guzzler trucks are slowly fading away with the growing awareness for renewable sources and clean Texas electricity. With Texas residents having the power to choose their energy options, the state is fast becoming a viable market for electric cars – despite the fact that the state remains to be on the low end of the national gas price average.

While it’s true that Texas will still be the primary market for Chevrolet Suburbans and other gas-guzzling trucks, vans and pick-ups, trends are slowly showing pointing in a direction where the state can be a leader in electric car adoption. Times are indeed changing and if states like Texas adopt electric cars into the mainstream, it would only be a matter of time before the rest of the country will also embrace the initiative.

Texas Electric Car Adoption

Electric cars are highly regarded as green vehicles because of their lack or minimal need for fossil fuels like gasoline. In a 2010 study conducted by the United States Department of Transportation, plug-in electric vehicles can contribute to the reduction of greenhouse gas emissions anywhere between 49 to 75 percent. Emissions for these green vehicles are attributed to the production of electricity required to charge the vehicles. In a state where renewable energy sources like wind power are used to generate Texas electricity, total emissions coming from electric vehicles can significantly still go lower.

There are currently over 21 million cars plying the roads of Texasright now and there are still quite a handful of electric cars owned and used by Texans. However, a Pike Research report shows that Texas cities, particularly Dallas and Houston, are expected to be among the top six early adopters of electric cars in the country by the year 2017. What currently is in the low hundreds in terms of numbers could bloom into millions as more and more Texans personally or collectively adopt the use of electric cars.

The state government is widely supporting the use of electric cars and has initiated subsidy programs such as the Texas Emissions Reduction Plan that will replace old public vehicles with plug-ins and other green-fueled vehicles. Another program called the Clean Fleet is being initiated in the city of Austin that will further boost the adoption of electric vehicles in the city. Other cities like Houston are moving up as well and will most likely be early adopters of the extensive use of electric vehicles. This includes the installation of several charging stations within the city and other municipalities.

The Brands Comes Marching In

Several Texas electricity companies and retailers are supporting the drive for the use of electric vehicles and will invest in privately funded charging networks throughout the major cities and municipalities in the state. This is in preparation for the expected arrival of more electric cars in the state and the influx of various brands catering to both high-end users and the general Texas consumer. Monthly plans will be provided to electric car users, allowing them to recharge their vehicles among the various fast-charging stations that will be placed in strategic locations across the state.

Electric vehicle brands are slowly marching in and making their entry into the Texan vehicle market. This includes new electric car brands such as the Chevrolet Volt and the Nissan Leaf, on top of the more established hybrids such as the Toyota Prius and the Ford Focus Electric. Amazingly, there are now at least 30 Texans owning the high-end Tesla Roadster, a super-fast electric vehicle favored as a celebrity toy that can cost over $100,000.

As the state and local governments infuse more incentives for the use of electric vehicles in Texas, more and more residents will continue to adopt these green vehicles. This will be further boost with better and more convenient charging facilities as well as affordable and varied electric car choices from several manufacturers and providers.

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