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Ride & Drive Event Gives Public Hands-On Experience with Electric, Hybrid Vehicles

October 23, 2019

Ride & Drive Event Gives Public Hands-On Experience with Electric, Hybrid Vehicles

Harrisburg, PA – The Drive Electric PA Coalition joined the interagency GreenGov Council today to showcase electric and hybrid vehicles that reduce emissions, improve energy efficiency and preserve the environment during a Ride & Drive Event at the Capitol Complex.

"Hybrid and plug-in electric vehicles increase energy efficiency, improve fuel economy, lower fuel costs and reduce emissions," said PA Department of General Services Secretary Curt Topper. "Through green government performance goals set by Governor Wolf, the commonwealth has begun the process of replacing 25-percent, or 500-plus vehicles, of our passenger fleet with electric or hybrid plug-in vehicles by 2025. Our strategy is to replace at least 100 vehicles each year to get to that goal."

The event featured more than 20 exhibitors from the public and private sectors to demonstrate electric vehicle technology. Test-drive vehicles included models from Tesla, GM and Nissan.

During a press conference, representatives of the GreenGov Council – the departments of General Services, Environmental Protection, and Conservation and Natural Resources – along with PennDOT discussed the future of electric vehicles and efforts to increase the use the technology and expand the supporting infrastructure in Pennsylvania.

"To slow climate change and improve our air quality, DEP is committed to steering Pennsylvania toward a future of electric transportation," said DEP Secretary Patrick McDonnell, "DEP is providing the most funding for electric vehicle and charging projects in the state, coordinating development of a statewide strategy to increase EV adoption, partnering on consumer education efforts, and leading by example as a state agency. And we'll continue to develop new ways to increase EV use."

"As Pennsylvania's conservation agency, DCNR is demonstrating our commitment to electric and hybrid vehicles in several ways," said DCNR Deputy Secretary for Administration Michael Walsh. "We're replacing fossil fuel vehicles with EVs, and we're installing EV charging stations at 43 state parks and forests.  The impacts of this work not only protects our environment, but provides benefits to all who visit our public lands, and the taxpayers of the commonwealth."

"PennDOT is proud to be part of the conversation around sustainability and transportation," said PennDOT Policy Specialist Ngani Ndimbie. "As a department, we continue to find ways to reduce our own greenhouse gas emissions, and we're proud to partner with other agencies to support sustainable transportation in Pennsylvania."

The Drive Electric Pennsylvania Coalition includes public and private sector partners and other interested stakeholders.  Its mission is to educate consumers, fleet managers, and government decision makers about the benefits of electric vehicle, the increasing availability of electric vehicle models, and the capabilities of the technology to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and reduce Pennsylvania's dependence on petroleum fuel.

Governor Wolf established the GreenGov Council in January as part of Executive Order 2019-01, which sets ambitious statewide emission reduction goals to slow down climate change in Pennsylvania. The Wolf Administration announced Tuesday that the GreenGov Council will begin its analysis of state agencies' energy saving and sustainability strategies.

MEDIA CONTACT:    Troy Thompson, DGS, 717-787-3197

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