SETRI Takes Initiative to Boost Electric Transportation in the Southeast

Posted by Ebo Entsuah on Sep 29, 2021 12:30:00 PM

SETRI blog post

As the popularity of electric transportation has risen throughout the nation, many different actors are now coming together to better coordinate on how to accelerate electric vehicle (EV) adoption. Florida has taken steps recently to be better prepared for EV adoption and charging infrastructure. We are seeing changes at the municipal, county, and state level to get ready for – and accelerate – electric transportation growth. Now we are seeing action on a region-wide basis as well – and AEE is at the center of it.

The city of Orlando has become the most recent municipality in the Southeast to increase EV adoption and readiness. AEE recently held an EV charging tour in Orlando to highlight the work that the city has done. The city recently adopted an EV make-ready ordinance that aims to help the city reach its ambitious sustainability goals including reducing greenhouse gas emissions 90% by 2040, and achieving 100% clean electricity by 2050.

Broward County in South Florida has set objectives to electrify the county vehicle fleet by 2030, increase the resilience of the transportation system, and reduce transportation emissions by 2% each year. County officials are also in the process of upgrading their diesel buses to battery-operated.

The Florida Department of Transportation (FDOT) recently finalized its comprehensive EV Roadmap. This roadmap came with legislative recommendations that the Public Service Commission or state legislature could adopt to increase EV adoption.

With these state and local actions, Florida has an opportunity to become a national leader in electric transportation, and even more so if the entire Southeast region follows suit.

This is why we at AEE are proud to announce that we have joined the Southeast Electric Transportation Regional Initiative or SETRI.

SETRI is an independent electric transportation market development collaboration. The more than 60 founding members include vehicle manufactures, charging station providers, supply chain companies, electric utilities, fleet managers, universities, Clean Cities coalitions, governmental agencies, and nonprofit organizations. As defined in a Memo of Understanding signed by participants, SETRI aims to promote regional EV market development, conduct education and outreach to consumers and decision-makers, coordinate state electrification efforts and university research, and collaborate with state transportation electrification efforts outside the Southeast.

SETRI sees an opportunity to leverage an already high proportion of private investment in EV and battery production with faster market adoption for regional growth. Over one-quarter of the estimated $24 billion in committed investments by automakers and battery manufacturers are in the Southeast, according to SETRI, while the region accounts for just 10% of national EV sales and 13% of EV chargers deployed. The region also lags in utility investment and government funding for transportation electrification.

SETRI hopes to turn that around in order to capture a variety of benefits for the region. These include job growth, energy security and resilience, grid improvements and downward pressure on electric rates, lower operating costs for fleet operators, improved air quality and lower carbon emissions, and new mobility options and reduced energy burdens for low- and moderate-income populations.

Florida should be among the beneficiaries of this regional effort. There are 9,300 Floridians who work in the electric transportation sector, a number that will only grow as EVs take off in the Southeast market. With AEE on board, the new Southeast Electric Transportation Regional Initiative can help drive that growth.

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Topics: State Policy, Advanced Transportation