State boosts electric vehicle rebate funding

Image Credit: The Westfield News

BOSTON (THE WESTFIELD NEWS) – Department of Energy Resources (DOER) Commissioner Judith Judson announced this week at the New England International Auto Show that the state is adding $2 million in funding to DOER’s electric vehicle (EV) rebate program.

“Electric vehicles are a vital component of our Global Warming Solutions Act commitment to reduce greenhouse gas emissions in the transportation sector,” said Governor Charlie Baker. “These rebates have proven to be important in buyers’ decisions to go electric and make clean transportation financially achievable for more Massachusetts residents.”

“In addition to saving drivers money, zero emission vehicles reduce air pollution, which improves the health of our communities and families,” said Lieutenant Governor Karyn Polito. “The Baker-Polito Administration is committed to reducing greenhouse gas emissions and petroleum use by aiding the transition to cleaner, more efficient vehicles for Massachusetts residents.”

Since June 2014, the Massachusetts Offers Rebates for Electric Vehicles (MOR-EV) program has issued nearly $3.8 million for 1,606 vehicles, cutting the state’s greenhouse gas emissions output by an estimated 4,554 tons annually. MOR-EV provides rebates ranging from $750 to $2,500 based on vehicle category and battery capacity.

Zero and low-emission vehicles save drivers money on fuel and maintenance costs, according to the DOER’s Fuel Economy side-by-side comparison. For example, a driver purchasing a compact battery electric vehicle can save $3,750 dollars on fuel over five years, compared to the same vehicle with a gasoline engine.

“The MOR-EV program’s success reflects Massachusetts drivers’ excitement about electric vehicles and their commitment to reducing environmental impact,” said Energy and Environmental Affairs Secretary Matthew Beaton. “By getting more electric vehicles on the road, we can reduce emissions and reliance on foreign oil, boost use of new technology and meet our commitment to a cleaner future for the Commonwealth.”

“Zero emission vehicles are a critical part of the clean transportation future and we are committed to helping Massachusetts auto dealers educate their customers on the benefits of driving zero emission vehicles,” said Judson.

According to the Center for Sustainable Energy (CSE), the MOR-EV program administrator, about 65 percent of MOR-EV rebates were for purchase or lease of battery electric vehicles, while the remaining were for plug-in hybrid electric vehicles. Nearly three-quarters of recent MOR-EV recipients who participated in a survey indicated the MOR-EV rebate was an important factor in their decision to buy an electric vehicle.

This funding is financed by Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative (RGGI) auction proceeds, and aims to help reduce reliance on foreign oil and meet Massachusetts’ goals under the Global Warming Solutions Act (GWSA) to reduce greenhouse gas emissions in the transportation sector 7.6 percent by 2020.

For complete rebate program information and other details, go to www.MOR-EV.org.

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