Drive Clean Rebate program offers additional $30 million to buy electric

An additional $30 million has been made available through New York state’s Drive Clean Rebate program to encourage drivers to lease or purchase all-electric vehicles or plug-in hybrid electric vehicles, Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s office said.

The funding and program changes will enhance vehicle affordability and help more New Yorkers take action to lower their carbon footprint while driving, the governor’s office said.

More than 37,000 rebates have been issued to date, totaling more than $54 million, through the Drive Clean Rebate program, which is administered by the New York State Energy Research and Development Authority (NYSERDA).

“New York is putting more electric vehicles on the road as part of our comprehensive strategy to electrify the transportation sector and build a more sustainable future,” Cuomo said in a statement this month. “Reducing emissions from vehicles will continue to enhance the quality of life in communities across New York by improving air quality, especially in disadvantaged communities that have been disproportionately impacted by pollution and climate change.”

Program changes are being made so that more rebates can be distributed throughout the market, with some rebate ranges being lowered to allow more New Yorkers to take advantage of the incentives, officials explained. The changes for consumers will take place June 30, 2021, and include updated rebate levels to incentivize EVs with longer all-electric ranges and EVs with a base MSRP of less than $42,000.

More than 50 EV models are available in New York, and of those models, 15 have a range of more than 200 miles and are eligible for the rebate. Rebates begin at $500 for vehicles with an MSRP of more than $42,000 and top out at $2,000 for vehicles with a range of 200 miles or more.

“The successful Drive Clean Rebate program has made driving an EV even more affordable and supports the market’s growing demand for clean transportation options,” said NYSERDA President and CEO Doreen Harris. “Expanding this program will ensure more New Yorkers have the ability to choose to drive clean while helping to lower their carbon footprint in support of Gov. Cuomo’s climate and clean energy goals.”

In the Finger Lakes Region, nearly 3,300 rebate applications have been filed, representing 8.7 percent of all applications statewide. Rebate applications in the Long Island region make up the vast majority of all applications at more than 32 percent.

“In efforts to reach our clean energy goals we need to create policies and initiatives that will allow consumers to do their part and lower their carbon footprint,” said Sen. Kevin Parker, D-Brooklyn, chairman of the Senate Energy and Telecommunications Committee. “The Drive Clean Rebate Program incentive is a great program. I applaud NYSERDA and Gov. Cuomo for working to ensure drivers are able to do their part and protect the environment.”

The additional Drive Clean Rebate funding comes from revenue generated through the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative. The state also is aggressively investing in the rapid build-out of its charging infrastructure with more than 7,000 charging stations installed statewide. The Charge Ready NY program provides $4,000 per charging port with an additional $500 per port for stations installed in disadvantaged communities and can be combined with the state’s 50 percent tax credit for charging station installation to boost savings.

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NYSERDA looking to boost clean transportation technologies

nyserda-logoUp to $5 million is being made available for transportation-related clean technology projects, the New York State Energy Research and Development Authority said Friday.

NYSERDA will award the funding as part of a two-step competitive process for proposals that include innovative clean transportation technologies and strategies to improve operations and reduce greenhouse gas emissions for public transit systems statewide.

“This funding is part of Gov. Cuomo’s comprehensive clean transportation strategy, which is driving transformation throughout the transportation sector to reduce emissions and make it easier than ever to ride clean and electric,” NYSERDA President and CEO Alicia Barton said in a news release. “These projects are a critical component for advancing solutions to some of our most pressing transportation efficiency and operations challenges while improving ridership experiences for New Yorkers.”

Funding is available through the state’s 10-year, $5.3 billion Clean Energy Fund. Some $18.5 million will be made available in multiple rounds of funding for projects to increase efficiency in public transit systems through 2022.

For the current awards, applicants must submit concept papers focusing on new or underutilized solutions that can help transit agencies make tangible improvements to bus and rail operations while achieving energy savings.

The transportation sector is one of the largest producers of energy-related greenhouse gas emissions in the state, officials said. As a result, New York has a number of programs designed to reduce emissions, including its Drive Clean Rebate initiative, which provides state residents with rebates of up to $2,000 for the purchase of a new or leased electric car.

Since the launch of the Drive Clean program, more than 6,600 New Yorkers have received rebates, totaling more than $7.5 million.

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State rebates helped build sales of electric vehicles in 2017

stock-photo_electric-car_585x329More than 5,750 consumers received rebates on their electric car purchase in New York since the state’s Drive Clean Rebate was launched a year ago, Gov. Andrew Cuomo announced last week.

The initiative provides drivers with a rebate of up to $2,000 for the purchase or lease of a new electric vehicle, or EV, from participating dealers. The rebate program supports the governor’s goal to reduce greenhouse gas emissions 40 percent by 2030.

“New York continues to lead the nation in reducing our carbon footprint by investing in clean energy alternatives,” Cuomo said in a statement. “Through the Drive Clean Rebate and by supporting the construction of new electric charging stations, this administration is taking critical steps to decrease greenhouse gas emissions while furthering our efforts to become a cleaner, greener Empire State for all.”

In the Finger Lakes region, some 585 applications were submitted for EV rebates, representing more than 10 percent of the total rebates in the program’s first year.

“During my travels across New York, I’ve seen the future unravel before my eyes—more electric vehicles on the road and electric vehicle charging stations in communities, many being supported through the Drive Clean Rebate,” Lieutenant Governor Kathy Hochul said. “This program helps New Yorkers make the switch to an electric vehicle, resulting in less pollution and a cleaner and greener New York.”

Since the Drive Clean Rebate program was announced last March, the state Energy Research and Development Authority, which administers the initiative, has approved more than $7.5 million in rebates for New Yorkers who purchased 35 different EV makes and models. The Toyota Prius Prime accounted for more than 38 percent of the rebates, while the Chevrolet Bolt EV accounted for 12 percent.

Most consumers received rebates of at least $1,100 for their new EVs. Officials say that as a result of the initiative, more than 10,000 electric cars were sold statewide in 2017, a 67 percent increase over 2016.

The transportation sector is responsible for more than 40 percent of the state’s greenhouse gas emissions, officials say. Compared with gas-powered vehicles, EVs are more energy efficient and cost about 50 to 70 percent less to operate per mile.

To encourage and support electric car adoption, Cuomo recently announced a proposal to increase the number of charging stations across the state by 2021. Dubbed Charge NY 2.0, the initiative calls for at least 10,000 charging stations, and the state will expand clean fuel corridors so clean cars can travel throughout New York’s interstate system and recharge at convenient locations.

The $70 million Drive Clean Rebate program is aimed at encouraging the growth of clean and non-polluting electric vehicle use in New York and promoting the reduction of carbon emissions in the transportation sector. The goal is to provide rebates to consumers to increase sales and leases and build market momentum, which, officials say, will drive down vehicle prices for consumers.

“The success of the Drive Clean Rebate shows that drivers want clean, energy efficient vehicles as a part of their daily lives,” said Alicia Barton, president and CEO of the New York State Energy Research and Development Authority. “The governor’s Drive Clean Rebate is enabling more New Yorkers to drive cleaner cars and in turn reduce harmful emissions, making our communities cleaner and greener.”

[email protected] / 585-653-4021
Follow Velvet Spicer on Twitter: @Velvet_Spicer