AUTHOR: Robert Walton@TeamWetDog PUBLISHED Feb. 22, 2018

Dive Brief:
More than three dozen groups across a range of industries are calling for the New York Public Service Commission to accelerate the state’s efforts to push electric vehicle adoption, in particular by turning more to utilities. Companies and groups signing on to the petition include: ChargePoint, EVgo, Natural Resources Defense Council, Pace Energy and Climate Center, Plug In America, Siemens, Sierra Club, Tesla, and Vote Solar.
The petition is supported by automakers, bus manufacturers, EV charging service providers, environmental advocates and others. They say the state’s customers could see almost $18 billion in benefits from the industry by 2050.
New York is looking to put almost 900,000 vehicles on the road by 2025 but the groups say the Public Service Commission can do more to accelerate progress, including finding a track outside of utility rate cases to consider transportation electrification issues.

New York wants more electric vehicles on its roads, but the group’s petition identifies two major hurdles: a lack of guidance from regulators to utilities, and rate cases that do not sufficiently address the issues involved in transportation electrification.

To address those, the 40 companies and groups say they want state regulators to open a proceeding on electric vehicle issues outside of rate cases. To that end, the petition says that proceeding should evaluate any proposals linked to electric vehicles, including rate proposals, rate changes and utility proposals for EV charging infrastructure. It would also “centralized” processes related to electric vehicles in New York’s Distributed System Implementation Plans under the Reforming the Energy Vision initiative, giving stakeholders more access.

New York, aside from its exhaustive overhaul of the utility business model, also wants to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by 40% in 2030 and 80% by 2050, from 1990 levels. The groups say the transportation sector emissions makes up more than a third of the state’s emissions. And the state has several policies and programs in place to encourage transportation electrification including the Drive Clean Rebate Program, offering up to $2,000 for the purchase of a qualifying EV.

New York now has about 30,000 EVs on the road, but has joined the multi-state Zero Emissions Vehicle agreement aiming to deploy 3.3 million EVs by 2025. New York’s share of that goal would be 850,000.