In a move which will offer a major shot in the arm to the electric vehicle industry, it has been reported that Mayor Greg Ballard of Indianapolis has signed an executive order today stating that the local authority will replace existing traditional fuel vehicles for an all electric fleet by 2025. Interestingly, rather than highlighting the fuel-efficient nature of electric vehicles and their reduced impact upon the environment the Indianapolis authorities have made this a matter of "national security".
The local government has highlighted the fact that America is more dependent on overseas oil producers today than ever before and this is putting the country at risk from conflicts and disagreements. It is estimated that the move to electric vehicles could save the U.S. taxpayer around $10 million a year in fuel costs alone, not to mention the improved reliability, reduced maintenance and environmental issues, which are very closely associated with the modern day electric vehicle.
It is not clear at this moment in time exactly how much it will cost the Indianapolis taxpayer to facilitate the switch from traditional fuel to electric powered vehicles, but there is no doubt that it will pay for itself in due course. It seems likely that a number of other U.S. states will follow suit now that Indianapolis has "broken the back" of the electric vehicle issue. There is also speculation that the U.S. government will look to roll out this particular process across the U.S. in due course. If successful this could be the major turning point for the electric vehicle market although we have been here before on numerous occasions only to fall short with disappointment.
Quote from Mayor Ballard : "The United States' current transportation energy model, driven by oil, exacts an enormous cost financially and in terms of strategic leverage. Our oil dependence in some cases places the fruits of our labor into the hands of dictators united against the people of the United States."
There is also an interesting side note this story because if the Indianapolis authorities do actually go ahead with this switch to electric vehicles they will need to increase the number of charging points around the state. It is estimated that the Indianapolis area currently has around 200 electric charging stations, which is only a fraction of the number of fuel stations in the region. So not only could we see an increase in electric vehicle manufacturing in and around Indianapolis but there is likely to be an increase in activity in the car charging market.
At this moment in time, assuming that the proposed change does go ahead, it looks like a win win situation for many different parties. The environmentalist will be happy that a major U.S. local government is looking to exchange traditional fuel vehicles for electric vehicles, the electric vehicle market will be more than happy at the additional interest and free advertising, while it looks as is though U.S. taxpayers will also reap the benefits in the longer term.
There been many critics of the ongoing obsession with the environment and reduced emissions but the fact is that this is a major turning point for the industry, for the environment, and could prompt a surge in electric vehicle sales in the medium to longer term.