EVs are an opportunity for the state to innovate and improve a broken tax system.
(OKLAHOMA CITY)— On Thursday, September 10, 2020, the House Transportation Committee heard from industry experts on the future of electric vehicles and the many ways Oklahoma can capitalize on the rapidly growing industry.
“As the Metropolitan Planning Organization (MPO) for the Oklahoma City area, the Association of Central Oklahoma Governments (ACOG) approach accelerating the adoption of electric vehicles as deeply rooted in the goals and objectives of our long-range transportation plan,” John M. Sharp, ACOG Deputy Director said. “As the affordability and availability of EVs has increased, a unique opportunity has emerged for our state to significantly decrease emissions from cars.”
Interim study IS20-033 was requested by Representative Brian Hill, who recognizes the fiscal effects of the shift to electric vehicles on Oklahoma, a state which relies on gasoline pump taxes to repair roads and bridges.
"Across our nation, the electric vehicle sector is growing rapidly. With many national fleets currently converting to electric vehicles and projections of over half of the transportation market converting by 2040, the time is now to begin examining how Oklahoma can bring this industry to our state and pursue job growth and economic diversification,” Hill said. “As the Energy State and the crossroads of America, Oklahoma is the perfect place for this thriving and growing industry to build the future.”
Electrification of transportation is happening quickly, with the EV industry already employing many Oklahomans. Industry experts emphasized the benefits of Oklahoma acting swiftly to adapt to the changing market.
“A vibrant multimodal transportation system is vital to safely and efficiently moving people, goods and services and to provide for Oklahoma’s future economic viability and competitiveness,” said Tim J. Gatz, Secretary of Transportation and Director of the Oklahoma Department of Transportation. “To meet this challenge, it is imperative that we have a vision for Oklahoma’s 21st century transportation system along with an innovative, modernized revenue framework and investment strategy that will support user needs for mobility, safety, improved infrastructure conditions and enhanced system reliability”.
Electricity fuels Oklahoma and employs thousands of Oklahomans. Oklahoma has the energy resources to become a leader in the global electric transportation market. Industry experts advised that state lawmakers must act quickly to benefit most from the inevitable change.
"The reality is that we are at the precipice of an enormous shift towards the electrification of transportation. The energy sector plays a critical role in this shift. Oklahoma has the opportunity now to claim its mantle as a worldwide energy leader and be at the forefront of this transition, reaping the economic benefits that entails,” said Jonathan Gray, Manager of Public Policy and Institutional Affairs for Enel North America.
About the Advanced Power Alliance: The Advanced Power Alliance is the industry trade association promoting the development of energy resources as clean, reliable, affordable, and infinite sources of power.
Headquartered in Austin, Texas, the APA is the advanced power industry's voice within the fourteen states of the Electric Reliability Council of Texas (ERCOT) and Southwest Power Pool (SPP) systems: Arkansas, Iowa, Kansas, Louisiana, Minnesota, Missouri, Montana, Nebraska, North Dakota, Oklahoma, South Dakota, Texas and Wyoming. Learn more at https://poweralliance.org/.
About the Oklahoma Power Alliance: The Oklahoma Power Alliance is the industry trade association representing members of the Oklahoma clean energy industry, project developers and investors, landowners, manufacturers and suppliers, counties and school districts, and the more than 9,000 employees working in Oklahoma in the renewables industry.
Oklahoma Power Alliance represents its members in Oklahoma's policy forums, seeking to encourage and support the production of electricity through the use of our state's vast renewable energy resources. As part of an "all of the above" solution, wind energy, solar power and battery storage are securing our energy independence. Learn more at https://okpoweralliance.com/.