Especially for commuters, plummeting gasoline prices are common and welcome knowledge, but will it kill the electric car?
For some analysts, opponents, and plain old haters, falling gasoline prices would have to be the “killing blow” to the electric car. In their minds, the only reason to buy an electric car, or hybrid, for that matter, is “save money on gas.” You would have to be irresponsible to spend more money on fuel-saving technology when gas is so cheap, right?
Actually, for many years that has been exactly true, and the electric car has lived and died on the premise that electric cars are only able to do one thing, save gas. Things are different this time and, in spite of falling gas prices, the electric car is proving that it can do more than one thing, that is, save our air. Barring charging an electric car on a coal-fired power plant, people are starting to recognize, not just the short-term financial benefits of electric cars, but also the long-term environmental benefits.
Forward-thinking policy-makers are fomenting this change in thinking, not to save themselves money, but to help everyone breathe a little easier. Leading the charge, of course, is California, home of the California Air Resources Board (CARB), perhaps the most forward-thinking air quality policy-making group. Other states have followed, such as Oregon, New York, Maryland, Massachusetts, and Vermont, among others, pushing automakers to sell more electric cars. By 2025, the overall goal is to have 3.3 million electric cars on the roads and, the beauty of the programs are that they don’t depend on contrived oil and gas prices. Judging by steady sales of plug-in vehicles, it seems that Big Oil won’t kill the electric car this time.