Role of Infrastructure: Preparing for the Future – Electric Cars

Infrastructure which could positively impact economy and environment is rare. Economists and environmentalists often do not meet eye-to-eye when it comes down to development and investment since environmentalists want whatever technology to be environmentally friendly in the first place and economists and developers would like to see the monetary benefits and potentials of the certain development or technology. I believe one infrastructure which could positively impact economists, developers, and environmentalists is the infrastructure for electric cars.

Electric cars have been known for possible positive impact on environment by significantly reducing overall carbon gas emission, which is the major reason for global warming and the climate change phenomenon. Gradually increasing cost and reducing amount of gas/fossil fuel are naturally turning the heads of developers and economists towards electric car industry. Already the electric car industry is starting to get competitive. The famous Tesla motor electric car is reducing their base model price of $70,000 since new competitors, such as Nissan, are coming out with base model with $20,000 to $30,000. BMW has electric i3 model starting at $40,000. So it looks like there soon will be a bloody electric-car-war in place in the near future.

Electric Car Charging Station

Electric Car Charging Station

One issue the electric car industry is facing is the lack of infrastructure. The cities simply are not prepared for the electric cars at this point. There are only around 5 electric car charging station in Seattle downtown. To make this potentially great product both for environment and economy, there has to be sound electric car infrastructure in cities so it makes sense for the consumers to use electric cars whenever and wherever they needed. Seattle actually announced the House Bill No. 1929 this February, requiring the buildings in Seattle to be ready for electric vehicles. The bill is stating that the city must adopt incentives to increase the number of electric car infrastructures in new buildings and existing buildings. The bill was revised from giving the city authority to give incentives for infrastructure to must give incentives to building developers, which shows the eagerness and the passion for the infrastructure establishment. I am very glad to see the city taking initiative and pushing being bold with this potentially great opportunity. It would be exciting to witness the gradual change in auto industry and how overall infrastructure cope with the growing industry in the future. I am ready for some action!

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