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NYState Uses PHEVs to Attract Industry, Earmarks $10M for Conversions
Aug 2, 2006 (From the CalCars-News archive)
This posting originally appeared at CalCars-News, our newsletter of breaking CalCars and plug-in hybrid news. View the original posting here.
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Two big pieces of news from The Empire State:

  • NYS is allocating $10M to convert 600 state-owned vehicles to PHEVs, leading to an expanded program for individual owners.
  • Toronto-based lithium battery maker Electrovaya (ranked 13th in Profit Magazine's ranking of the fastest-growing Canadian companies) will open a facility in NYS, eventually with 75 employees. Excerpts from the Governor's press release, then Associated Press and Albany Business Review stories­governor/­press/­06/­0801062.html GOVERNOR AND SENATE MAJORITY LEADER ANNOUNCE
SARATOGA TECHNOLOGY + ENERGY PARK New Alternative Fuel Research Lab and $10 Million Program for Plug-in Hybrids Will Help to Reduce Dependence on Imported Energy

Governor George E. Pataki and Senate Majority Leader Joseph L. Bruno today announced plans for the construction of a state-of-the-art alternative fuel research laboratory at the Saratoga Technology + Energy Park (STEP) and a new $10 million State program to convert vehicles in the State fleet to plug-in hybrids.

"This year, New York State has taken significant steps to reduce our dependence on imported energy, and we will continue to promote cutting-edge research and technology that will build a brighter energy future here in the Empire State," Governor Pataki said. "This new vehicle testing laboratory and our investments in plug-in hybrids are critical to this effort, and will help spur the innovation necessary to transition away from a petroleum-based transportation sector.
The $10 million plug-in hybrids program will facilitate the development and deployment of these advanced, high-mileage vehicles, which can achieve a fuel economy of up to 100 miles per gallon. Under this program, the 600 hybrid vehicles in the State fleet will be retrofitted to be plug-in hybrids. Once the State's hybrid vehicles have been converted to plug-in hybrids, the program will be made available to private vehicle owners through a competitive process.

Plug-in hybrid vehicles can be plugged into the electric grid - such as a normal 120 volt household outlet - to boost mileage. This will allow the vehicles to operate on emissions-free battery power, reducing the amount of fuel utilized and significantly decreasing the release of harmful pollutants, including greenhouse gases. Since the utility grid has lower demand during overnight hours, the recharging of plug-ins would not add to the peak load.
In addition, the Governor announced that Electrovaya, a Canadian high-tech battery manufacturing firm, plans to expand Canadian operations into 5,000 square feet of manufacturing space at STEP, with additional expansion planned. The company's lithium-ion batteries can be used in a variety of products and applications.
This year, Governor Pataki proposed an energy independence plan designed to reduce our State's dependence on imported energy, promote greater use of clean, renewable fuels, and spur additional research and development into clean and alternative energy sources. Among the initiatives proposed by the Governor and approved by the State Legislature were [3 of 8 shown]:

  • The elimination of all State taxes on renewable automobile fuels, including ethanol (E85), biodiesel, and compressed natural gas (CNG), hydrogen, and other renewable fuels, providing a savings of approximately 40 cents/gallon for consumers.
  • A new $10 million program to retrofit the 600 hybrid vehicles in the State fleet to be plug-in hybrids, which allows them to be plugged into the electric grid to boost mileage in excess of 100 miles per gallon while significantly reducing emissions of harmful pollutants. Once the State's hybrid vehicles have been converted to plug-in hybrids, the program will be made available to private vehicle owners through a competitive process.
  • A $5 million competitive grant program, administered by NYSERDA, for start-up companies that are developing or deploying the next generation of vehicle batteries, propulsions systems, and lightweight vehicle parts and components.­news/­local/­wire/­newyork/­ny-bc-ny--pataki-environmen0801aug01,0,1989235.story?coll=ny-region-apnewyork State to open research center for alternative fuel cars By MICHAEL GORMLEY, Associated Press Writer, August 1, 2006,

MALTA, N.Y. -- The state will build a research center to develop technology such as an engine that can tap just 45 cents worth of electricity at night to turn a 50-mile-per-gallon hybrid car into a 100 mpg plug-in hybrid.

The research and development center will include a Canadian high-technology battery manufacturer. Hudson Valley Community College in Troy would provide employee training. The center will be built in the Saratoga Technology + Energy Park about 20 miles north of Albany. Contracts will be bid this fall with the plant operating in 2008.

The center would research new programs to conserve energy, decrease dependence on petroleum and reduce emissions, said Gov. George Pataki. It will test new technologies including fuel cell propulsion and develop emission controls for diesel buses and trucks.

The center is intended to attract private companies using government support to develop alternative fuels and to train and retrain employees in the field.

Pataki said the technology will reduce emissions and take advantage of excess power in the state's utility grid at night.

Pataki also announced that the state would spend $10 million to convert 600 state vehicles to plug-in hybrid vehicles. After the state project is done, the facility will be made available to private companies to retrofit vehicles. <snip--bigger program for corn ethanol described>­albany/­stories/­2006/­07/­31/­daily24.html?jst=b_ln_hl

Alternative fuel research lab to be constructed at Saratoga tech park The Business Review (Albany) - 4:50 PM EDT Tuesday by Richard A. D'Errico

Gov. George Pataki announced plans for an alternative fuel research lab at the Saratoga Technology + Energy Park on Tuesday.

During the announcement at the Malta, N.Y., tech park, Pataki also said that a Canadian company that manufactures high tech batteries would move into the area.

The company, electrovaya, will occupy 5,000 square feet of an existing building at the Saratoga Technology + Energy Park. Initially the company will have 15 employees locally, but expects to expand that number to 75 people over the next five years.

Also announced Tuesday was a $10 million program to convert 600 of the state's fleet of vehicles into hybrids. Currently, 5,500 of the state's fleet are already hybrids.

Pataki said STEP would be to energy what Albany NanoTech is to nanotechnology. The state at University at Albany's $3 billion Albany NanoTech research site is home to research efforts of giants such as IBM, Honeywell and AMD.

"These new programs are important tools in our effort to develop clean and renewable fuels, promote greater energy efficiency, and create jobs in the emerging energy sector," Pataki said.

At one point, an easel holding a rendering of the new lab, blew over. Without missing a beat, Pataki said wind power was also an important energy source that would be developed at the park.

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