Each year, American passenger cars and trucks, through vehicle tailpipe and oil extraction and transport emissions, spew upward of 3 trillion tons of carbon pollution into the air by burning about 121 billion gallons of gasoline. In addition to worsening climate change, our dangerous dependence on oil has resulted in countless catastrophes like the BP spill in the Gulf of Mexico.
In almost in every region of the country, carbon emissions from the electricity sources used to power electric vehicles are lower than the emissions from conventional cars (doing a full life-cycle analysis).
But the possibility of adding to these gains remains largely out of reach for a large portion of the new vehicle-buying population: recent high school graduates. Many families choose to send their new grads off to college with a new vehicle (or, at least, new to the kid). Today's high school graduates care about the environment and often want to make a more environmentally friendly choice in their transportation; however, lack of EV charging stations on college campuses remains a barrier nationwide to EV ownership for college students.
Students who live in dorms would need an EV charging station near their dorm to make EV ownership realistic. Students who rent locally are prevented in most cases as renters, rather than property owners, from installing EV chargers at these residences. These students would require on-campus parking garages equipped with EV chargers in order to own an EV.
We need to provide accessible EV chargers for all of our higher education students by 2020. Make our institutions competitive, and make our world cleaner. Help put Louisiana at the top of a good list!
Julie DesOrmeaux Rosenzweig
director, Sierra Club Delta Chapter