I Believe that the Future is Electric (by San Francisco Mayor Gavin Newsom)


Hi, I’m Gavin Newsom, Mayor of San Francisco, and I’d like to welcome you to the electric vehicle challenge being hosted by Gas 2.0.

Our city has long been at the forefront of sustainability, and we now turn our focus to one of our biggest challenges: transportation.

I believe that the future is electric, and as Mayor I hope to make San Francisco the epicenter of electric vehicle technology. To that end, we have already established a 9-point policy plan for electric vehicle infrastructure, though our efforts to advance electric vehicles are not limited to San Francisco.


We’ve engaged the entire Bay Area, a region of 7.3 million people, to make our region the cornerstone of the coming market for EVs. Not just governments, but key companies, business associations, policy advocates, and international car and EV infrastructure companies are all working together to make the San Francisco Bay Area the EV Capital of the U.S.

Of course, we aren’t alone in this effort. Recently our neighbor to the North, Mayor Sam Adams in Portland, challenged us to an “EV War,” to see which city could build the world’s first fully-electric vehicle grid.

It’s no secret that Portland and San Francisco have been battling for the title of “most sustainable city” for years. We welcome Portland’s latest challenge and hope that this EV competition will spread across the country, creating thousands of new jobs and helping to establish the United States as a leader in electric vehicle technology.

This type of competition symbolizes what is best about our region and our country. It’s an enlightened competition, one that seeks to raise the bar for everyone, and we hope you’ll join us in this endeavor, at electriccarrace.org.

I’m looking forward to hearing your ideas about how to make your city and the United States the leader in electric vehicle technology.

Now as a friendly competitor I will say that San Francisco will do everything we can to be first, so may the best city win, and let’s go make this future a reality.

Editor’s Note: This speech was given by San Francisco Mayor Gavin Newsom for Gas 2.0, for the purpose of kicking off The Great Electric Vehicle Race.

About the Author

was the youngest San Francisco mayor in over a century when he was elected at the age of 41. Newsom, the son of William and Tessa Newsom, grew up in the San Francisco Bay Area. He attended Santa Clara University on a partial baseball scholarship, graduating in 1989 with a B.A. in political science. After only 36 days as mayor, Newsom gained worldwide attention when he granted marriage licenses to same-sex couples. This bold move set the tone for Newsom’s first term. Under his energetic leadership, the economy grew and jobs were created. The city became a center for biotech and clean tech. He initiated a plan to bring universal health care to all of the city’s uninsured residents. And Newsom aggressively pursued local solutions to global climate change. In 2007, Newsom was re-elected with over 73% of the vote. Since then he has built upon the successes of his first term, launching new environmental initiatives and a comprehensive strategy to transform one of the city’s most troubled neighborhoods into a life sciences, digital media, and clean tech center.