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Denver Kicks off “Drive Electric” Campaign to Promote Electric Vehicles

Denver’s Department of Environmental Health is encouraging residents to drive electric vehicles (EVs) in a new air quality and sustainability campaign launching at www.denvergov.org/passgas.

Funded by a grant from the 11th Hour Project, the campaign aims to educate Denver metro drivers about the numerous benefits of EV ownership and invites the public to a launch event at Civic Center Park on Sept. 12 from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m.

Denver metro residents can take the Pass Gas Pledge and be entered to win one of two Chargepoint residential charging stations worth $499, or visit the website to learn more about the hundreds of public charging stations located around Denver and beyond.

Held in conjunction with Civic Center Eats, the launch event will allow attendees to test drive electric bikes and several EV models from Tesla, Chevy, Ford and Audi. The first 100 test drivers will receive a free food truck lunch at Civic Center Eats. Attendees can also talk with current EV owners and ask questions about their vehicles and why they chose to pass gas. 

“Pass Gas, Drive Electric” highlights Colorado as the most affordable state in the country to buy an EV. Owners can qualify for up to $12,500 in tax credits toward any plug-in vehicle, and electricity costs less than half the price of gasoline.

The “Pass Gas, Drive Electric” campaign also supports a commitment stated in Mayor Michael B. Hancock’s Mobility Action Plan to raise EV awareness, which was one of three strategies for doubling the EV ownership growth rate by 2020.

“To help reduce our greenhouse gas emissions by 80 percent, we must significantly expand the use of electric vehicles, and this report confirms that they’re a valuable investment in both air quality and as a tool for fighting climate change,” Mayor Hancock said. “Electric vehicles are an important component of Denver’s newly released Mobility Action Plan, and the market opportunities identified for charging infrastructure throughout Denver and Colorado shows consumers and businesses that choosing EVs is not just an environmentally-conscious choice, but an economical one.”

This campaign comes on the heels of Electrify America’s selection of Denver as one of 11 metro areas across the country to receive 300 EV charging stations over the next two years. It also follows the recent release of Opportunities for Vehicle Electrification in the Denver Metro area and Across the Front Range, a report from Denver Environmental Health that concludes EVs are a necessary solution to fighting air pollution and climate change. Plugging in an EV in Denver reduces emissions of nitrogen oxides by 63 percent and reduces greenhouse gas emissions by 43 percent compared to the average vehicle. Nitrogen oxides are the primary contributor to ozone pollution, which has serious health and respiratory impacts, and greenhouse gas emissions cause climate change.

Those reductions are forecast to improve over time as Colorado’s renewable energy portfolio increases. By 2025 electric vehicles are expected to produce 84 percent fewer nitrogen oxides and 49 percent fewer greenhouse gases as compared to a new gasoline automobile meeting 2025 emissions standards. 

Transportation is the leading source of air pollution and the second leading source of greenhouse gases in Denver. Electric vehicles can help the City improve air quality and uphold Mayor Hancock’s ongoing commitment to the Paris Climate Accord.

For more information contact Tyler Svitak at Tyler.Svitak@DenverGov.org, 720-865-5426.