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NYC to Double its Use of Electric Vehicles, Hits New Milestone

NYC’s government vehicle fleet has replaced 2,200 gas-powered vehicles and will reach 4,000 by 2025.

The New York City Department of Citywide Administrative Services (DCAS) announced it has replaced 2,200 gas-powered on-road fleet vehicles with plug-in electric models. This milestone was achieved six years ahead of a 2025 target set by New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio in the NYC Clean Fleet Plan, announced in 2015.

The city said it will now double its goal and will have at least 4,000 on-road electric vehicles in use by 2025. When de Blasio took office in 2014, the city had only 211 electric vehicles in its fleet. The announcement was made at the 31st Annual Fleet Show hosted by DCAS and the NYC Parks Department in Flushing Meadows Corona Park.

“It’s time to say goodbye to fossil fuels and say hello to an emissions-free future,” said Lisette Camilo, commissioner of DCAS, in a statement. “The cars we buy directly impact the air we breathe and how we impact our climate. That is why we’re shrinking the size of city government’s vehicle fleet and using cleaner fueling options.”

The 2,200 plug-in electric vehicles that have been introduced to the city’s fleet have reduced annual CO2 emissions by nearly 9,000 metric tons, the equivalent of burning 1 million gallons gasoline. In addition to the environmental benefits of electric vehicles, their use has reduced fueling and maintenance costs. The average all-electric sedan costs 65 percent less to maintain, saving more than $550 per year for each vehicle. In total, one-third of the city’s sedans, excluding police cars, are now electric-powered.

The city has undertaken a rapid phase-out of traditional vehicles for electric models. Under de Blasio’s NYC Clean Fleet Plan, DCAS has also:

  • Replaced 5,400 traditional vehicles with hybrid models.
  • Expanded the use of biofuels, including beginning to use renewable diesel, a 99 percent petroleum-free alternative.
  • Achieved a milestone of 100 miles per gallon fuel economy equivalent for sedans purchased during fiscal year 2018.
  • Installed the nation’s largest network of solar-powered electric vehicle chargers.
  • Equipped FDNY ambulances with anti-idling and electric plug-in capable technology.

The city also announced at the Fleet Show that the police department has received the first of its 200 hybrid police cars and unveiled the first electric vehicle “fast charger” that will be used by various city fleet vehicles. This technology can fully charge an electric sedan in 45 minutes compared to six hours for traditional chargers.

“In 2000, fleet had only two alternative fuel models available and neither were plug-ins,” said Keith Kerman, NYC chief fleet officer and DCAS deputy commissioner, in a statement. “Today, we have over 40 alternative fuel models on the road including electric plug-in sedan, SUV, cross-over and mini-van options, and we expect to see these options continue to expand including to trucks.”

Earlier this year, de Blasio also signed an executive order that will eliminate at least 1,000 non-electric vehicles from the city vehicle fleet by June 2021, reduce the number of take-home vehicles for employees by at least 500 and replace 250 SUVs with electric plug-in sedans.

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