As part of GRID Alternatives’ vision of a transition to clean, renewable energy that includes everyone, we have launched a new initiative to make electric vehicles more accessible to the communities we serve. This effort is initially focused on California, in conjunction with investments from the California Air Resources Board (CARB) in low-carbon transportation equity programs, and SB 1275, the California Charge Ahead Initiative.
Low-income families in the US spend approximately $75-$78 billion every year on gasoline. Communities of color are disproportionately impacted by pollution from both gasoline consumption and gasoline production, including disproportionate exposure to airborne lead poisoning from the era of leaded gasoline. By pairing electric vehicles with solar power, GRID Alternatives is helping families replace gasoline with sunshine, saving them money and replacing local air pollution with clean energy. Communities can produce their own transportation fuel and keep that money in the community, while reducing greenhouse gas emissions in their neighborhoods.
GRID Alternatives’ initial focus is on supporting community outreach and helping qualified customers charge their electric vehicles with solar power by working with partner organizations implementing low-carbon transportation equity programs. Current partnerships include:
The Clean Vehicle Assistance Program, a new California statewide pilot project administered by Beneficial State Foundation to provide grants of up to $5,000 and loans to low-income consumers to purchase new or used clean vehicles, as well as free Level 2 charging stations for customers who purchase battery electric vehicles.
The Clean Vehicle Rebate Project, California’s main statewide electric vehicle incentive program administered by the Center for Sustainable Energy, that offers higher rebates of up to $4,500 to qualifying low-income consumers
The Clean Cars 4 All Program, a “scrap and replace” program administered by local California air districts, providing incentives through California Climate Investments (CCI) to lower-income California drivers to scrap their older, high-polluting car and replace it with a zero- or near-zero emission replacement. This program is currently operated in the San Joaquin Valley Air Pollution Quality District by Valley CAN, and by the South Coast Air Quality Management District as the “Replace Your Ride” program.
In 2018, GRID Alternatives was selected by the California Air Resources Board to administer the One-Stop-Shop Pilot, a clean transportation project that will streamline access to clean transportation-related incentives available to income-qualified consumers in California. GRID is not directly providing electric vehicle incentives to consumers at this time. If you are interested in applying for any of the above programs, contact the organizations above.
Organizations interested in partnership opportunities with GRID Alternatives in the electric vehicle space can contact Zach Franklin, Chief Strategy Officer, at firstname.lastname@example.org.
For more information on electric vehicles and equity, visit The Greenlining Institute’s Electric Vehicles for All: An Equity Toolkit.