San Diego Gas and Electric (SDG&E) has pledged to spend $7.5 million over the next five years on a campaign to promote the adoption of zero-emission vehicles.
SDG&E announced their plans to educate people about electric vehicles in conjunction with a program already approved by the California Public Utilities Commission to install more than 3,000 charging stations in the region.
Promoting electric vehicles is one of the best ways to fight climate change since the transportation sector accounts for approximately 40 percent of greenhouse gas emissions in California, according to SDG&E.
The utility plans to hold "EV ride-and-drives" where consumers will get the opportunity to test drive different models from different manufacturers.
Mayor Kevin Faulconer, SDG&E’s Chairman, President and CEO Jeff Martin and Chula Vista Mayor Mary Casillas Salas all spoke at the launch.
"Clean energy, clean technology; it's exactly what we're doing here in San Diego," Mayor Faulconer said at the press conference. "I was very proud this year, as we move forward on our city's Climate Action Plan, to be absolute nationwide leaders when it comes to sustainability and when it comes to renewable energy.
SDG&E’s goal is to bring vehicle chargers to every city in San Diego and the southern part of Orange County.
SDG&E will also be joined by the first 15 to 20 local participants who are seeking to install electric vehicle charging stations as part of Power Your Drive, a pilot program to install 3,500 charging stations at multi-family communities, businesses and underserved neighborhoods. This program is expected to help reduce obstacles to electric vehicle ownership and maximize energy generated by the sun and the wind to charge vehicles when renewable energy is plentiful.
The businesses and community groups involved include American Lung Association, Bayview Baptist Church, Circulate San Diego, City of Chula Vista, City of National City, City of San Diego, County of San Diego, Cuyamaca College, Escondido Union High School District, Gildred Co., H.G. Fenton Company, I Love A Clean San Diego, Jewish Family Services, Menlo Equities, Palomar College, San Diego Housing Federation, Sea World, Sony, UCSD, and UTC Aerospace, according to an SDG&E news release.
Those interested in learning more about the education campaign and EV charging station program can visit sdge.com/poweryourdrive.