Electric car owners in California offsetting 350,000 gallons of petroleum use per month
California is leading the U.S. in electric vehicle adoption, with over 12,000 plug-in electric vehicles in the state, representing over 35% of the total in the U.S. A new study by the California Center for Sustainable Energy (CCSE) released this week shows a range of both consumer and environmental benefits.
The survey of more than 1,400 plug-in electric vehicle (PEV) owners (this includes both all electric vehicles like the Nissan Leaf, and plug-in hybrid vehicles like the Chevy Volt and Toyota Prius Plug-in). Car owners supplied information on vehicle usage, charging behavior and access to charging infrastructure. The survey did not directly calculate vehicle emissions, however the study organizers note that California's electricity mix is cleaner than in other states because California's electricity primarily comes from natural gas power plants, or hydro-electric systems.
The survey found that plug-in electric vehicle owners have a high rate of solar power adoption. Today thirty-nine percent (39%) of plug-in EV owners have solar panels, and another 31 percent (31%) are considering solar installations within a year. An electric vehicle owner who buys solar panels can recoup the investment more quickly because they are offsetting gasoline costs rather than electricity costs.