LWV to host electric vehicle demonstration 

RTS Electric bus
An RTS electric bus will be on display during an electric vehicle demonstration on Saturday. (Courtesy City of Gainesville)

The League of Women Voters (LWV) of Alachua County, the Southern Alliance for Clean Energy, and National Drive Electric Week will host an electric vehicle (EV) demonstration event on Saturday in Gainesville. 

During Gainesville’s Annual Downtown Festival and Art Show, the LWV will have an EV Demo Booth from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. At the booth, people can learn about EVs and get directions to the public parking lot where the vehicle display is located at the southwest corner of SE 4th Avenue and SE 4th Street. 

Experienced EV owners will display their vehicles and discuss how they use them on daily commutes or long road trips. The event will give information regarding charging stations and the effects of owning an EV.  

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A wide range of options will be displayed, including a Gainesville Regional Transit System (RTS) electric bus, electric scooters, bikes, cars, and trucks. 

The vehicles will be stationary and no driving is allowed to ensure the safety of eventgoers. 

“The National Drive Electric Week help set up websites for each of these events to promote the use of electric vehicles,” said Wes Wheeler, former vice president of LWV, in a phone interview. “The League of Women Voters supports clean energy, so we support electric vehicles as part of the transition to a cleaner future. That is a big reason why we are doing this event.” 

Alachua County is transitioning from fossil fuel-burning vehicles to electric vehicle driving. 

Around 40% of greenhouse gas emissions in the Gainesville area are from the transportation sector and internal combustion engine cars. 

“That is changing rapidly,” Wheeler said. “I know we’ve hit a tipping point in the US, as other countries have, with transitioning to electric vehicles, and all we’re doing is just making folks aware that these vehicles are out there.” 

Last year, Alachua County recorded 1,066 registered EVs; as of July 2022, that number has surged to nearly 1,400. 

There are many reasons for the recent increase. The main reasons include lifetime costs are less expensive, EVs are cleaner, have no greenhouse gas emissions, are low maintenance, and are technically advanced. 

“I want to get the message out there to folks that the change is happening, and it’s not scary,” Wheeler said. “It is a bit of education. I think everybody will be just as excited as those of us holding the demonstration.” 

The LWV is a civic organization that advocates for nonpartisan education and voter participation. Their mission is to get people to go out and vote without endorsing any particular candidate. 

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Philip

“There are many reasons for the recent increase. The main reasons include lifetime costs are less expensive, EVs are cleaner, are low maintenance, and are technically advanced.” – I’m so tired of the endless presentation of information that isn’t factual. EV’s are currently more expensive to purchase initially than normal ICE vehicles, only cleaner if you don’t consider the impacts of mining and eventually discarding all the nasty metals used in the batteries as well as being only as clean as the method of power generation that is used to charge them, only low maintenance until you have to replace a $10K battery pack, and are no more “advanced” than current ICE vehicles…just a different propulsion system. GM’s new EV’s advertise a pretty nice full charge range estimate….just don’t ask how long it takes to get that “full charge.” Add all this to the fact that current neighborhood power grids would fail if there was a sudden massive adoption of these vehicles. Just like the climate change cultists its just shameful that all relevant information isn’t provided, only endless cheerleading. If an EV works for you and you can afford it, by all means get one…but it would be nice if everyone had access to all the information that might help guide them in a buying decision.

Hortense

Congrats on not having your comment removed since it’s not 100% pro EV. My comment about the risk of battery fires from EV buses was deleted by some queen of “misinformation.” Just google “French EV bus fire” if you want to see what’s out there, well documented videos of EV buses and other EV vehicles dissolving into volcanoes of flames is not “misinformation.”