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State launches Drive Electric Alabama program promoting use of electric vehicles

The Alabama Department of Economic and Community Affairs (ADECA) on Monday announced the launch of the state’s electric vehicle (EV) education and marketing program.

Drive Electric Alabama will serve to educate the general public about the financial and economic benefits of electric vehicles. The program will raise awareness and promote the use of the non-combustion engine automobiles.

Gov. Kay Ivey, who attended the announcement on the campus of the University of Alabama at Birmingham, praised the program’s launch and spoke to Alabama’s robust automotive industry.

“As automakers make significant investments in electric vehicles, we know more and more motorists will consider purchasing one,” said Ivey. “In addition, automobile manufacturing is one of Alabama’s key industries, and we want to make sure that this economic engine remains vibrant for Alabama’s workers.”

She added, “That’s why I’m pleased Alabama is launching this education and marketing program that will help all Alabamians learn more about EVs.”

According to ADECA, the program will partake in a television, billboard, radio and digital advertising campaign. Drive Electric Alabama will hold events to engage Alabamians regarding electric vehicle technology, affordability, charging and other related topics.

ADECA director Kenneth Boswell advised that the use of electric vehicles was poised to increase as leading automobile companies are rapidly incorporating the technology into their inventories.

“It’s clear electric vehicles represent the next generation of automobile manufacturing,” declared Boswell. “That’s precisely why this is the perfect time for Alabamians to learn about electric vehicles, as many auto manufacturers, including Mercedes-Benz right here in our state, are beginning to add electric vehicles to their fleets.”

Cost savings and economic benefits associated with the use of electric vehicles are articulated in the inaugural “Electric Gets You There” marketing campaign.

The campaign notes that electric vehicles can help consumers save on their every day commutes by eliminating the cost of gas and oil changes. Additionally, the marketing effort cites that the purchase of such vehicles will allow Alabama to remain one of the world’s top automobile exporters.

Drive Electric Alabama holds a broad support coalition which includes Alabama Power, the Energy Institute of Alabama, the Alabama State Department of Commerce, the Alabama Department of Conservation and Natural Resources, the Alabama Transportation Institute, and the Alabama Clean Fuels Coalition.

Alongside the marketing campaign, ADECA announced that it was crafting a statewide electric vehicle infrastructure plan, which the department anticipates will be finalized by the year’s end.

Alabama Clean Fuels Coalition president Michael Stanley indicated that the campaign would serve to answer consumers’ questions relating to electric vehicles.

“Automobile manufacturers have announced billions of dollars in investments in EVs in the last year, but most Alabama motorists have questions about how far EVs can travel on a single charge, how often and where EVs are charged, and how much money is saved by switching from gasoline to electric,” said Staley. “These are questions Drive Electric Alabama and the ‘Electric Gets You There’ campaign can help answer and begin to normalize this transition from gas to electric for many Alabamians.”

Dylan Smith is a staff writer for Yellowhammer News. You can follow him on Twitter @DylanSmithAL