Published on April 26th, 2011 | by Andrew Meggison
Is Your City on Ford's EV List?
With the release of the fully electric Ford Focus just around the corner, Ford has posted a map pin pointing cities across the country that the Ford company thinks are best suited for electric car ownership.
Most of Middle America and many other traditionally red states did not make the cut, while “blue” cities like Boston, New York, Seattle, and Denver got the thumbs up. According to Ford, one of the major deciding factors for the company to give approval to a city for electric car use was if that city had formed an Electric Vehicles (EV) advisory panel. Cities that had EV advisory panels were mainly in traditionally blue states across the nation. These electric car friendly cities have made it easier for their citizens to obtain home charging station permits as well as using urban planning techniques in the placing of public charging stations.
All of this planning and preparation for electric cars does mean that the government will interfere and be involved in the lives of their citizens a bit more in order to make wide spread use of electric vehicles a reality. Yet, this is where American society hits a brick wall. The issue of increased government involvement is such a hot button topic in this nation that it factors into a wide range of public policy issues– from taxes and women’s rights all the way to the electric car.
The cities that Ford has highlighted as being electric car friendly are indeed all liberal voting cities, although some being liberal cities within conservative states such as Dallas, Texas. However, when one looks at national voting statistics most major metropolitan areas across the nation vote liberally. The reasons for this liberal voting trend in American cities is vast but some factors that play a role include a higher concentration of universities and colleges in the cities, think the city of Boston, as well as increased citizen concerns about the environment such as the air quality that these urban dwellers breath every day.
With gasoline prices reaching $4.00 a gallon the move to electric and alternative fueled vehicles must happen. While it is nice to see that Ford has given approval to electric car use to many cities across the nation, further study must be done in the more rural states. People in most cities across the United States have access to some type of public transportation, limiting the amount of time these people spend in their cars and lessening the pain at the pump. Where these high fuel costs are really hurting are in the rural areas where people have to drive in order to get to work or the grocery store. As it is, rural areas tend to vote conservatively and thus against government intervention, which seems counterintuitive. It will be interesting to see where the electric car debate leads, especially in rural America where high gas prices hurt most.
Image Source: Treehugger.com
Andrew Meggison was born in the state of Maine and educated in Massachusetts. Andrew earned a Bachelor’s Degree in Government and International Relations from Clark University and a Master’s Degree in Political Science from Northeastern University. Being an Eagle Scout, Andrew has a passion for all things environmental. In his free time Andrew enjoys writing, exploring the great outdoors, a good film, and a creative cocktail.