Coulomb Technologies ChargePoint
We've often noted that the biggest hurdle for electric vehicles to overcome is the energy and recharging infrastructure. (In fact, that was listed among the most significant obstacles facing the MINI E just last week.) Now, a sprawling coalition of business leaders -- including Nissan's outspoken CEO, Carlos Ghosn -- have announced an aggressive plan to address such problems and speed America down the EV highway. Called the "Electrification Roadmap", the plan calls for EVs to make up 75% of all light-duty traffic by the year 2040. Central to the plan's strategy is the development of "electrification ecosystems" in key cities (rather than boosting the charging infrastructure everywhere at once). Says coalition member David Crane of NRG Energy, "Introducing all the separate elements, from cars to infrastructure, simultaneously in select communities across the country will move electrification beyond the early adopters".
As aggressive and optimistic as the Electrification Roadmap seems, it's not entirely unfeasible. Americans of all stripes have expressed interest in electric vehicles, and outside of petroleum refineries, you'd be hard-pressed to find many who enjoy being dependent on oil -- foreign or domestic. Also, switching to EVs could offer a much-needed boost to the manufacturing sector; much like the shift from albums to eight-tracks to cassette tapes to CDs, changing formats requires investment in new hardware. Whether the Roadmap is a groundbreaking idea or a total pipe dream, we're interested to see how it rolls out.