Md. leaders kick off ‘drive electric’ week in Annapolis

Sen. Chris Van Hollen sits in a Tesla at the Annapolis City Dock on Sunday. (WTOP/Luke Lukert)
An Electric Mustand Mach-E police car seen at Annapolis City Dock on Sunday. (WTOP/Luke Lukert)
A Tesla is seen at the Annapolis City Dock on Sunday. (WTOP/Luke Lukert)

Elected officials from Maryland met at the City Dock in Annapolis on Sunday to push drivers towards electric cars.

The event kicked off National Drive Electric Week

“We know what climate change looks like in the city of Annapolis. We feel it on many days of the year of the year when you get turned around at the Eastport Bridge because there’s been flooding, or when you can’t get to the businesses on Dock Street because there’s flooding,” said Annapolis Mayor Gavin Buckley. “So whether you believe in climate change or not, the water that’s coming into Annapolis is real.”

Non-profit Annapolis Green hosted the “Kick Gas. Drive Electric” event. Attendees were able to check out new electric cars from makers like Ford, Chevy and Tesla.

Both the Annapolis mayor and Anne Arundel county executive say they are getting electric trucks for their personal use.

Buckley added that he was on the reservation list to purchase a new Ford F-150 Lightning and executive Steuart Pittman is on the list for Tesla’s Cybertruck.

Participants also attended seminars on the benefits of switching to electric as well as how to handle some of the complications like installing charging stations at the home.

Senator Chris Van Hollen was at the event to discuss how the $1 trillion bipartisan infrastructure bill that had been passed by the senate would benefit electric vehicle drivers.

“At the federal level, we did pass in the senate a bipartisan bill, to modernize our infrastructure,” Van Hollen said. “Now, it is just a down payment, it doesn’t go nearly far enough. But it is a down payment on building out national charging infrastructure, about $7.5 billion. The state of Maryland would get over a period of time tens of millions of dollars to help build out electric charging stations here in Maryland, and the same would be true around the country,” he said. 

But Van Hollen said that more is just needed than just the switch to electric vehicles.

“The other big part we have to do, obviously, is make sure we have renewable power generation, so that when you plug in your electric vehicle, the power you’re getting is clean energy as well, whether it’s solar, whether it’s wind, whether it’s other forms of clean energy.”

The house is expected to vote on that bill later this week.

Luke Lukert

Since joining WTOP Luke Lukert has held just about every job in the newsroom from producer to web writer and now he works as a full-time reporter. He is an avid fan of UGA football. Go Dawgs!

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