New Jersey Towns Codify Support for Electric Vehicle Bill
Environment New Jersey
Trenton – Ten towns and one county have passed resolutions in the last month in support of the Electric Vehicle legislation (S2252/A4819) that would expand charging infrastructure and rebates for buying electric, as the New Jersey Legislature enters the height of the lame duck legislative session.
East Orange, South Orange, Haddon Heights, West Caldwell, Sayreville, Metuchen, Franklin, Gloucester City, Highland Park, Princeton and Mercer County passed resolutions calling for legislators to pass the bill in the lame duck legislative session that began after Election Day and will end January 13. Resolutions are also on the docket in South Amboy, Milltown, Woodlynne, and Winslow Township.
“The lame duck legislative clock is ticking and the time is now to pass the electric vehicle legislation. Towns, cities and counties are weighing in loudly over the last month urging for the EV bill’s passage,” said Doug O’Malley, director of Environment New Jersey. “Electric vehicles remain one of the best ways to clean up our air & fight climate change, but we need to supercharge their adoption. The best way to make EVs common is to build a fast-charging network of EV chargers along our busiest roadways and to provide rebates to purchase more EVs. We urge the Assembly and the Senate to pass the EV bill by the end of the session.”
The bill, S2252/A4819 would establish a statewide charging network, increase rebates for buying an electric vehicle, and codify the Clean Cars mandate to have 330,000 EVs on the road by 2025. The bill would develop a plan for installing hundreds of public DC fast chargers along our busiest roads and highways and 1,000 Level 2 public community chargers in downtown areas across the state over the next three years. This would decrease range anxiety of EV owners, jumpstart the EV market and play a large part in reducing emissions and addressing air quality concerns.
“Things are changing and we need to be prepared to take advantage of the rapidly expanding electric vehicle market,” said Mercer County Freeholder Nina D. Melker. “I believe by passing this resolution the Board and Mercer County as a whole has shown that we are committed to fostering sustainability and ensuring a healthy environment for present and future citizens of our County.”
Currently, nearly half of New Jersey’s greenhouse gas emissions come from the transportation sector, with the majority of those from personal vehicles. These emissions contribute to the effects of climate change in New Jersey, which is already warming at twice the rate of the rest of the United States and has 330,000 people living on coasts vulnerable to sea level rise and dangerous storms. Transportation sector emissions also contribute to New Jersey’s poor air quality, which consistently fails Environmental Protection Agency health standards.
“Here in South Orange, we are in support of S2252/A4819 because we understand that supporting transportation electrification not only benefits the environment but ultimately all New Jerseyans,” said Sheena Collum, Village President of the Township of South Orange. “Range anxiety is a key obstacle to the widespread adoption of electric vehicles and infrastructure support from the state can remove it. More EV drivers means more clean commuting, tourism, work travel, and shopping – all of which benefit the NJ economy. The vast improvements in air quality brought by EV adoption across business and public sectors will improve the health and happiness of all New Jerseyans, even those who don’t drive electric vehicles. Transportation electrification is good for all of NJ.”
“Electric vehicles are 70% cleaner per mile than a gas-powered car, so it’s essential we make it possible to get them on the road as soon as possible,” said Amy Folkerts, the clean energy associate with Environment New Jersey. “These cars are fast, fun to drive, and the future of clean, green transportation in our state. By passing these resolutions, towns across New Jersey have demonstrated their commitment to the health of our environment and citizens.”
Passing S2252/A4819 is an immediate opportunity to better New Jersey’s air quality, safeguard our environment, and create thousands of local clean energy jobs, and towns, cities and counties from Essex to Mercer to Camden County are on board.