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Stars Align for Advanced Vehicle Infrastructure
By RONA FRIED, PH.D.
Rona Fried, Ph.D., is
president of Sustainable
Business.com, the online
community for green
business: daily green
business and investor
news, green jobs and the
green investing newsletter, The Green Investor.
Contact Fried at rona@
In the case of electric cars, it’s corporations that are driv- ing the market, not consumers. While strong incentives are in place for people to
switch to electric cars, in the form of high gas prices and federal rebates, the Nissan Leaf and Chevy Volt are struggling
to find customers. They’ll be joined by a slew of electric cars
from other car manufacturers soon. Barriers to adoption
include a high price tag, range anxiety and competition from
conventional cars that can get 40 mpg.
Nonetheless, retailers are lining up to offer charging
services at their stores.
Walgreens is taking the biggest leap, installing 800
charging stations at stores across the United States by the
end of 2011.
“As more Americans embrace environmentally sus-
tainable technologies, our convenient locations make us
uniquely positioned to help address the concern around
accessibility or ‘range confidence,’” said Mark Wagner,
president of community management and operations at
Walgreens. “According to the Department of Energy, Wal-
greens will make up as much as 40 percent of all public elec-
tric vehicle-charging stations across the country, making it
easy for electric vehicle (EV) drivers to look to our stores
for a quick charge near major highways, metropolitan areas
or right in their neighborhood.”
Other retailers have similar plans, including Best Buy,
Cracker Barrel, Ikea and Lowe’s.
36 January/February 2012 SOLAR TODAY solartoday.org