National Plug In Day promotes electric vehicles

According to the Department of Energy’s website, there are more than 4,400 charging stations nationwide.

Sunday is National Plug In Day and more than 50 cities across the country are celebrating electric vehicles.

“I saw this car and I just I just had to have it,” David Aubuchon said.

Aubuchon is talking about his Tesla – an electric vehicle that defies many of the stereotypes of EVs.

“They’re golfcarts, and that they’re slow and that they’re ugly,” said Bob Tregilus, co-chair of the Electric Auto Association of Northern Nevada. These are just a few things Tregilus says are misconceptions. He’s hoping the 2nd Annual Plug-in Day event will change those ideas – especially for people like Phillip Telander who are thinking about making the switch.

“Gas prices are just ridiculous right now, but the other thing is a lot of our foreign policy is based off of our oil,” Telander said.

John Scire teaches an energy policy class at UNR. He’s looking into EVs partially because of their zero carbon dioxide emissions.

“There’s little doubt now that CO2 going into the air does affect the environment,” Scire said. “Precisely how much is man’s cause versus the natural cycle is still a little bit uncertain.”

Switching from the pump to a plug could even have some bigger benefits. Scire says it doesn’t just help the environment, it could also help the economy.

“Why don’t we export the oil?” Scire said. “Let’s use less and less. Let’s be more efficient so our products are competitive, and let’s become Saudi Arabia, and have everybody send us their billions.”

On a smaller scale, people say driving an electric car can pad their pocketbooks.

“You don’t have to have it smogged,” said Russ Patrick. “You don’t have to change the oil.”

I pay less than a dime for a kilowatt hour of electricity from NV Energy and that dime’s worth of electricity will take me almost five miles,” Frank Ackerman said.

Which means Ackerman is getting 50 miles to the dollar. He bought an electric car in February and isn’t looking back.

“I miss my gas powered car like I miss a bad cold,” Ackerman said.

Others who have gone electric agreed.

“We should be 100 percent electric vehles,” Bob Marsh said. “It’s a no-brainer.”

Owners say the one drawback is limited driving distance. They say longer battery life and more charging stations would help.