Staff in Southern California’s Santa Barbara County will have a fleet of 56 new Chevrolet Bolt EVs at their disposal in the coming months. The new EVs are expected to hit the road by this summer, replacing 56 internal-combustion-powered sedans which have reached the end of their service life at 100,000 miles.
It’s estimated that the switch from gas-powered vehicles to new Chevrolet Bolts will reduce local CO2 emissions by as much as 200 metric tons annually. What’s more, if all 240 light-duty sedans currently in service go electric, it’s estimated that CO2 emissions will be reduced by as much as 857 metric tons.
Approval is now sought to purchase the new fleet of Chevrolet Bolt EVs from Rio Vista Chevrolet, following the dealer’s low-bid submission to supply the county’s new vehicles.
In order to support the new Chevrolet Bolt EVs, the Santa Barbara County Board of Supervisors also voted to acquire and install a range of charging units this week, with 68 new level-two vehicle chargers, three DC quick chargers, as well as the software and various related services to run them.
The Board voted four to zero to approve the proposal, with one abstaining.
Some critics called the move “greenwashing,” as the electricity used to charge the vehicles won’t come from environmentally friendly sources.
Andy Caldwell from the Coalition of Labor also critiqued the project, which was given the go-ahead amid a road maintenance deficit and pension crisis. Caldwell labeled the approval as “virtue signaling.”
“I don’t know anybody who turns in their cars at 100,000 miles,” Caldwell said.
Meanwhile, PowerFlex Systems was tapped to provide the new EV charge units in exchange for low-carbon fuel credits, which are estimated at a value of $500,000. County vehicles will have priority at the new charging stations, but county employees and the general public will also have access.
Source: Santa Maria Times