What’s happening? The constitutional amendment to establish that gig workers are not employees saw the state’s largest political contribution ever with a $14.4 M contribution by Lyft.
Why is this important? The ballot fight in California was that state’s most expensive. That initiative was declared unconstitutional by California lower courts.
How will this be important? The MA Attorney General is currently suing tech companies over the issue. Both CA and MA are showing the the issue to be complicated in terms of regulation, legislation, litigation, and campaigning.
What is happening? Swedish-Kenyan Startup OPIBUS is beginning service for its EV mass transit bus.
Why is this important? By 2023 their mass transit will operate throughout Africa.
How will this be important? OPIBUS is pivoting to the building of EVs and supportive infrastructure
What’s happening? Shell is rolling out converted some UK gas stations that now offer EV charging.
Why is this important? Chargers at the station can charge most EVs from 0% to 80% state of charge in 10 minutes
How will this be important? Shell has announced it will be net zero carbon by 2050. It is calling these converted stations the future. California is considered the first location for EV gas station conversions.
What is happening? PA is considering toll payment options from Venmo, PayPal and others as an instant form of payment.
Why is this important? The new instant forms of toll payment would not replace other payment options but would be in addition to the other payment options.
How will this be important? The automatic payment options are also seen as a means to reduce unpaid tolls which increased during the pandemic to $104 million in uncollected tolls.
What’s happening? Michigan has a EV partnership with IL, IN and WI.
Why is this important? Part of the partnership includes installing EV chargers around Lake Michigan to reduce range anxiety, and as we talked about to support the tourism on the Lake Michigan circuit. Bonjour! ecotourism.
How will this be important? Michigan is all in with more than $1 billion in EV incentives. It’s competing with EV manufacturing in TN and NC.
What is happening? Norway is being touted as the leader in EV policies. Let’s note that Norway is also oil rich with its North Sea oil. In 2021, 8% of the cars sold in Norway ran only on oil. In 2015 20% of the cars sold in Norway were EV.
Why is this important? Incentives in Norway include generous tax incentives and free tolls and parking. Some say a key in Norway was there was no range anxiety.
How will this be important? The two can coexist- pro EV and Pro oil.
What is happening? Oregon and Washington State have joined forces to promote EV adoption.
Why is this important? The states are promoting EV adoption by adopting two pieces of legislation:
How will this be important? By targeting large and medium size trucks the emission reductions helps at warehouses and roadways where emissions may disproportionally impact Black, LatinX and communities of people of color.
How will this be important? These policy pieces require truck manufacturers to sell an increasing number of zero-emission vehicles in Washington and Oregon, 55% of new Class 2b-3 trucks, 75 percent of new Class 4-8 trucks, and 40% of new Class 7-8 tractors by 2035. The ZEV program requires manufacturers to sell an increasing number of electric passenger vehicles.
What’s happening? The US has its 1st EV fire trucks in Los Angeles and Rancho Cucamonga. The trucks arrived from Austria.
Why is this important? There are only 3 fully EV drive train fire trucks in existence: Berlin, Amsterdam and Dubai.
How will this be important? The adaptable trucks are anticipated to have less maintenance costs and with the addition of on truck back up diesel power can extend the truck’s range.
What’s happening? Everyone is talking about supply chain. Some experts say this is nothing new in that the transition to 24/7 supply chain has been ongoing
Why is this important? Some shipping companies are offering incentives for truckers to collect containers on nights and weekends & incentives for timely pickups. Some ports are opening pop up container storage to move things along
How will this be important? The trucking side of this coin says safe parking and reduced detention times are crucial
What is happening? New year, hello! 2022, and new laws, SB 911 (2021 | TX) around delivery services in Texas.
Why is this important? The state laws specifically pre-empt city ordinances and limit misleading uses of trademarks, fees that are not agreed to in writing are prohibited, provide mechanisms for customers to complain to the delivery service, 10 day cap to remove a restaurant after a request, and provides a means for restaurants to sue delivery services.
How will this be important? California has passed something similar. NYC & Washington State are into capping fees. NYC has also considered setting parameters around consumer data.
What’s happening? Transportation policy experts say that 2021 transportation policies have added a distinct element of social equity.
Why is this important? Transportation policy now uses phrases like “universal basic mobility.” We’ve talked about cities eliminating fees for transportation in the heat of the pandemic and beyond. It isn’t limited to L.A., it is also Kansas City.
How will this be important? “The return on investment for compassion, for empathy, for social equity … far outweighs the return on investment in concrete and asphalt. What do you want to invest in?” Robbie Makinen, CEO of the Kansas City Area Transportation Authority in Kansas City, Mo. The experts sy this change in transportation policy mindset is just beginning.
What is happening? Colorado Transportation Commission reduced the amount of greenhouse gases & support the state’s push for more EVs
Why is this important? Opposition came from a group of business interest groups that says the regulations harm an ongoing investment in relieving traffic congestion
How will this be important? The Transportation Commissions work dovetailed with regulations from the Colorado Air Quality Control Commission for new rules that would require more frequent inspections of oil and gas well sites to reduce methane.
What’s happening? Florida’s Governor is proposing a cut to the state’s gas tax to help cut the impact of inflation.
Why is this important? The proposal calls for suspending the state gas tax for 6 months.
How will this be important? Policy minds say that it is easier to suspend the gas tax than to re-write other portions of state tax code. Call it an easy way to cut taxes.
What is happening? Michigan is returning motor vehicle payments that funded the Michigan Catastrophic Claims Association and has a $5 B surplus.
Why is this important? Michigan is known for its high car insurance rates. To combat that reputation, the Governor is calling on the state to rebate $400 to every vehicle in the state from the surplus proceeds of the MI Catastrophic Claims Assoc.
How will this be important? Returning excess taxpayer revenue to the state’s taxpayers is trendy
What is happening? NJ’s Governor is calling for proposals for “Trenton Mobility & Opportunity: Vehicles Equity System (MOVES),” an all electric transit system that would serve 90,000 in Trenton.
Why is this important? The plan is for electric autonomous minibuses to serve routes
How will this be important? Microtransit is on the rise with other programs in Europe, Brooklyn and Texas
What’s happening? Since the pandemic, sales of bikes has soared.
Why is this important? Bikes and bike rentals, are seen as safer with bigger wheels and a place to put a bag.
How will this be important? In San Antonio, TX bikes are legally permitted on all city streets and trail and can travel up to 15mph. The regulatory quagmire remains the elusive bike lane and protecting the safety of bikes.
What’s happening? Startup Parallel Flight Technologies is building heavy duty drones that an help in fighting wildfires by carrying equipment and can help by transporting organs for transplant.
Why is this important? The vast majority of drones can fly for 15 minutes. The heavy duty drone can reach speeds from 60 to 100 mph and carry up to 100 pounds over longer distances.
How will this be important? Regulatory and legislative issues with heavy duty drones and drone statutes/regulations.
What’s happening? The pandemic slowed the EV impact to the ever declining gas tax revenue.
Why is this important? TN just landed the F150 Ford EV manufacturing facility and also just raised regulation fees for EVs to $100 to account for the lack of gas taxes paid by EVs, but the average vehicle gas tax for TN is $300.
How will this be important? mTN and Libertarian think tanks favor pay as you drive taxes/fees.
What’s happening? States are paying for the build out of EV charging stations in rural areas with grant funding, incentives, tax credits, and public private partnerships.
Why is this important? The start ups are coming into urban areas to own and manage charging.
How will this be important? The federal Infrastructure Bill has funds for just this purpose.
What is happening? Virginia passed a law enforcement reform package that included prohibiting traffic stops & searches for things like smelling marijuana to minor traffic offenses.
Why is this important? The goal of the legislation was to address that a disproportionate number who are pulled over are BIPOC.
How will this be important? Let’s watch who follows suit.
What is happening? Philadelphia police will not conduct low level traffic stops like when a tail light is out.
Why is this important? The purpose is to address racial disparities in traffic stops without compromising public safety. Instead of the stop a ticket could be mailed to the registered address of the vehicle.
How will it be important? Minneapolis has scaled back similar police stops, and other states have passed legislation.
What is happening? Meet the High Speed Rail Alliance, ” a growing community working to bring the game-changing power of fast, frequent and affordable trains to North America.”
Why is this important? It covers projects in California, Texas, Florida and the Upper Midwest
How will this be important? “And in an era of intensifying climate change, it has the lowest carbon footprint—by far—of the three options.”
What is happening? A proposal for high speed rail between Chicago and St. Louis is added to the list of high speed rail projects that include California, Texas Central, and Florida.
Why is this important? The funding for foundational work for the Chicago project came from the Infrastructure Bill and in August lawmakers in Illinois created the Illinois High-Speed Railway Commission.
How will this be important? The Chicago project points out that not everyone has a car to make the 284 mile trip, and the same goes for the HSR lines in other states too, a time efficient train trip is a solution.
What’s happening? Meet Opibus, a US VC funded, Kenya- Sweden partnership to convert existing buses and motorcycles to EV.
Why is this important? Opibus was founded in 2017 when it focused on vehicle to EV conversation
How will this be important? The biggest set backs are scaling up fast enough and adequate charging infrastructure
What’s happening? Lyft is self imposing regulations that if a passenger establishes their account with anonymous payment source, like Venmo or a gift card, the passenger must also provide an alternative form of identification
Why is this important? Minneapolis is experiencing a spate of carjackings of ride share drivers
How will this be important? Codification of this is in the future
What’s happening? Data shows that 3 of 5 scooter accidents happen when scooters are on sidewalks. 1/3 of these accidents occur on sidewalks when sidewalk riding is not permitted
Why is this important?
How will this be important? Cities have taken away from these safety ordinances that working with a few companies makes it easier to reach an agreement on agreed to safety measures.
What is happening? Part of the federal infrastructure bill is to require all new vehicles by 2026 to have a mechanism to stop drunks from driving.
Why is this important? US DOT will determine the appropriate technology.
How will this be important? The technology most likely to come out on top is infrared cameras that monitor driver behavior
What’s happening? Seattle Mayor Executive Order during the 2021 United Nations Climate Change Conference includes ways to incentivize the electrification of vehicles
Why is this important? The order establishes establishes a $1 million program to convert heavy-duty diesel trucks — including school buses, garbage trucks and drayage port trucks
How will this be important? Converting the drayage vehicles to EV, which travel from he port through neighborhoods that are more dramatically impacted by clean air will help Seattle be a leader in for environmental justice.
What’s happening? Seattle Mayor signed an Executive Order extending free transportation to middle school students, expanded from the current free for high school students.
Why is this important? More than 13,500 high school students in the city participate in the current program, this expansion could add as many as 8500 students.
How will this be important? The goal is to free up roadways and teach transit use to younger generations & will improve diversity and inclusion by offering greater access to schools for BIPOC students who have disproportionately less access to transportation options.
What’s happening? Elon Musk’s The Boring Company is proposing building tunnels that would use auto driving Teslas to transport people to beaches.
Why is this important? The local goal is to improve traffic flow and downtown congestion.
How will this be important? The Boring pitch is we can cut the cost from $1B a mile to $10 M a mile with new technology that allows us to build while we excavate making the process 15 times faster.
What’s happening? Miami Beach is elevating roadways to preserve its infrastructure as sea levels rise.
Why is this important? Miami Beach’s rational : “Miami Beach is at the forefront of resilience efforts to reduce flood risk from storms, high tides and sea level rise. We strongly believe the city’s resilience program benefits all properties, including this one.”
How will this be important? Property owners contend that elevating the roadways instead directed flood waters to their property.
What’s happening? California has a statewide program to encourage TNCs to move to EVs. The California Air Resources Board crafted the the nation’s first vehicle electrification plan for transportation network companies and finalized it with the miles standard program that 2% of all TNC trips must be in electric vehicles by 2023 and that ramps up to 13% by 2025, 50% by 2027 and 90% by 2030.
Why is this important? Whether the EV standards are realistic for TNC companies is a point of contention. TNCs operating in California have until January 2022 to submit two-year plans to begin meeting the regulation.
How will this be important? Let watch and see what incentive programs emerge for EV adoption because of these programs
What’s happening? Uber and Wallbox are partnering to make it easier for Uber drivers to have access to a callbox charger for their EVs.
Why is this important? The pilot projects currently limited to the Bay Area and will offer Uber drivers a discounted package for a Wallbox charger, installation and financing options. If successful the program will be nationwide.
How will this be important? “Climate is a team sport and Uber is committed to doing our part to expedite the transition to zero-emissions mobility. Making electric vehicle charging solutions available at scale is essential to achieving our goals and we are excited to partner with Wallbox on this mission.” – Andrew MacDonald, Uber senior vice president of mobility and business operations
What’s happening? Chic 1960s luxury train service is returning in Europe as a sign that luxury rail will be a viable option in lieu of short range flights.
Why is this important? Alternatives to short range flights is a competitive service. Think of the business bus services moving between Austin Dallas and Houston.
How will this be important? Luxury trains on existing tracks have an allure as short term air travel and luxury don’t often overlap.
What’s happening? Prague is a tourist city and yet it has found a way to prove its transit fares help its citizens by charging more for single use tickets that are often used by tourists.
How is this important? The scale of Prague’s transit fares are roughly:
For tourists the fares are $1.50 for 30 minutes, $2 for 40 minutes, and $6 for 24 hours.
Why will this be important? By offering low rate annual fares it trains citizens into long term thinking for transit and frees up roadways.
What’s happening? Nashville is adopting new regulations for large party vehicles. Party Vehicles are back?! Supporters include Nashville Downtown Partnership, Nashville Area Chamber of Commerce and community coalition Safe Fun Nashville.
Why is this important? Nashville regulations will cover:
How will this be important? The large party vehicles had gone largely unregulated in Nashville- how about your city? Add in the state legislature where Nashville wants to clarify that it has the authority to regulate these vehicles.
What’s happening? New South Wales Parliament in Australia just passed new EV reforms the are being told as the most generous for EV drivers.
Why is this important? The new EV incentives include:
How will this be important? The program was designed to meet Australia’s goal of 50% EV sales by 2030
What’s happening? Los Angeles Mayor’s office created a non-profit, Urban Movement Labs, to work with citizens & air taxi service companies to avoid the regulatory issues that ride share and scooters had. Regulations would include infrastructure like vertiports, noise issues, and zoning laws.
Why is this important? Getting stakeholders involved before regulations can streamline the process by recommending a proposed regulatory structure.
How will this be important? Sets forth a model to handle all new novel issues.
What’s happening? Ohio is warning that it has a shortage of plow driving that threatens to leave roads full of snow.
Why is this important? On an average winter Ohio employee 3300 plow truck operators that work 12 hour shifts. The state currently needs more than 500 more drivers.
How will this be important? Whether Ohioans can move about their roads, and get to and from school, work, the grocer, that has electoral impacts. A happy person translates into the voter booth.
What’s happening? Ev sales increased 41% during the pandemic as car sales overall dropped 16%
Why is this important? The future of EV sales includes:
How will this be important? 230 million EVs on the road by 2030 according to the International Energy Agency if more aggressive climate standards are enacted
What’s happening? Norwegian chemical company Yara International has developed the world’s first zero-emission, autonomous cargo ship.The Ship’s name is Yara Birkeland.
Why is this important?m Its more cost effective with zero carbon emissions. The ship has no crews. It has crew on the ground in 3 locations monitoring the ship’s movement.
How will this be important? The ship will also be loaded and unloaded with autonomous vehicles.
What’s happening? This spring the Colorado Legislature passed SB21-260 (21 | CO) that required the Department of Transportation to account for climate consequences in their transportation plans. Now those plans are out in the wild.
Why is this important? The plan looks to Electric Vehicles and Zero Emission vehicles to make the greatest impact , specially as trucking industry moves to zero emission choices.
How will this be important? Colorado looked to the experiences of California, Massachusetts and other coastal states by:
What’s happening? Orlando and NASA are partnering to prepare the city for flying vehicles.
Why is this important? The partnership will help the city plan for vertiports, landing pads for the oversized drones. The planning will include economic development and infrastructure.
How will this be important? The vertiports will include charging infrastructure. The partnership to build out the port’s infrastructure includes Lillium, City of Orlando, Tavistock Group, & Lake Nona’s developer.
What is happening? M.J. Bradley & Associates, the Georgetown Climate Center, and nonprofit Ceres, the Evaluation and Development of Regional Infrastructure for Vehicle Electrification have developed an online mapping tool.
Why is this important? Using federal data it allows policymakers to consider demographic, economic, and environmental factors when choosing new charging stations
How will this be important? Can be customized to region, state, metropolitan area, county, or transportation corridor, by fast-charging plug type, or overlay information on commercial locations, potential access to home charging, and population density
What is happening? The City of Cleveland is partnering with a non-profit Bike Cleveland, the Greater Cleveland Regional Transit Authority, the Ohio Department of Transportation, LAND Studio, and the Cleveland Foundation to support the city’s Vision Zero Action Plan with the goal of reducing traffic accidents.
Why is this important? This is a data driven partnership that takes into account:
How will this be important? 51 cities across the country have adopted Vision Zero Action plans. There’s a partnership nearby for you.
What’s happening? The Governor’s of MI, MN, IL, IN & WI have formed REV Midwest — the Regional Electric Vehicle Midwest Coalition.
Why is this important? The Governors say that they want to improve the region’s economy while also reducing toxic emissions.
How will this be important? REV Midwest is being touted as the leader on electric vehicle adoption, reducing carbon emissions, spurring innovation, and creating good-paying jobs
What’s happening? Texas Governor signed HB 19 (2021 | TX) that attorneys for injured drivers, not at fault, say that the insurance coverage of the trucker, delivery driver or ride share won’t cover all their medical costs.
Why is this important? The number of motor vehicle lawsuits have increased by 118% while the number of crashes has increased by only single digits.
How will this be important? The bill’s author said, “If there’s any part of the bill that would hinder a Texans’ ability to seek those damages, then the bill won’t move. I promise you that.”
What is happening? Toronto is introducing mandatory in-person road training for rideshare.
Why is this important? Uber and Lyft both say that they fully support mandatory road training for public safety.
How will this be important? Whether this trend repeats.
What is happening? Ford Motor Company is committing Billions to 2 EV manufacturing facilities. One located in Kentucky and the other in Tennessee.
Why is this important? Let’s look at the numbers:
How will this be important? This is part of a total of $30 B investment from Ford to see fully electric vehicles to make up 40% to 50% of its U.S. sales by 2030
What’s happening? New Jersey is unveiling a solar powered bus stop with LED lighting, USB charging outlets and motion censors for safety and conservation.
Why is this important? Riders returning to mass transit are said to be expecting more tech.
How will this be important? A solar powered bus stop price tag is $11,900 and are being tested in NJ, NY, PA, Canada
What’s happening? Michigan’s Governor is proposing a series of EV chargers to be installed along Lake Michigan near tourist destinations. The Governor refers to the program as Lake Michigan Electric Vehicle Circuit.
Why is this important? The Governor says “we’re going to serve as the best new road trip for electric vehicle owners in America”
How will this be important? This is the first time I’ve seen the tie between EVS and tourist spots, there have been mentions of state parks like Rivian’s state park chargers in Colorado.
What is happening? Oregon Governor signed SB 794 (2021 | OR) that would charge out of state RVs 25% more at state parks.
Why is this important? Policymakers say it evens out the RV playing field as Oregonians pay extra to register their RV with Oregon’s DMV.
How will this be important? Whether other states will follow suit and impose tourist taxes
What’s happening? Local governments looking to switch their fleets to EVs are also looking for incentives and grants. Here’s what is available:
Why is this important? Switching to EVs has a cost to purchase the EV fleet, but results in lower maintenance costs.
How will this be important? As more local governments switch to EV fleets, more EV grants or incentives will emerge.
What’s happening? Michigan and Indiana are both vying to be the first state with a mile long roadway that charges EVs.
Why is this important? Michigan will move forward with its Inductive Vehicle Charging Pilot. Indiana will use magnetizable concrete to enable wireless charging of EVs.
How will this be important? EV charging roadways are functioning in Europe and small test areas exist in the U.S. but a long stretch of public roadway in the U.S. is forthcoming if this Indiana and Michigan competition is any indication.
What’s happening? A proposal for a high speed rail from Las Vegas to Los Angeles is gaining calls for wildlife bridges to protect the mountain sheep along the rail line.
Why is this important? How this high speed rail project considered the wildlife bridge may be telling for other rail lines and may be a way to preemptively make amends with opposition.
How will this be important? let’s watch and see how this unfolds- wildlife bridges the new negotiating tool
What’s happening? Houston is expanding its EV fleet with a transition anticipated in 2030. The city anticipates recouping about $55 million of that cost in fuel savings and avoided maintenance costs
Why is this important? The current fleet is 15 EVs. This year it is adding 100 EV light duty trucks and transit vans.
How will this be important? The charger roll out will be 3 phases. (1) replace 42 chargers destroyed by Hurricane Harvey. (2) add chargers at police and fire stations (3) add chargers to parks and other city-owned spots.
What’s happening? Elizabeth Warren has sided with gig workers to be classified as employees as the fight about gig worker classification plays out in Massachusetts.
Why is this important? Like in California, industry has proposed a ballot proposition to ensure that gig workers are not employees.
How will this be important? Let’s watch what all the states do. Some will codify that gig workers are contract workers, some will codify that gig workers are employees, and some will have ballot propositions. It’s who is on which side that helps you shape your allies.
What’s happening? A new study by Reason, SHOULD GOVERNMENTS LEASE THEIR AIRPORTS?, says 31 airports could free up $131 billion for infrastructure improvements in local governments. It works by a local government leasing or selling its airport, a revenue-producing asset. Congress’ 2018, The new Airport Investment Partnership Program, allows cities to enter into public private partnerships for their airports. Those lease proceeds can then be used as general revenue.
Why is this important? Cities have seen revenues impacted by the pandemic and this would provide access to new general revenue without raising taxes.
How will this be important? Look to the 3 most likely leases: global airport companies, infrastructure investment funds, and public pension funds. The value of the 31 airports, including multiple in Texas and California, can be found here.
What’s happening? A podcast interview with Texas Central Rail CEO illuminates that the federal Infrastructure Bill could impact construction which is not expected within the next 6 months.
Why is this important? The federal infrastructure bill could open up $12 billion in federal loans
How will this be important? 40% of the land n necessary for the project has been secured
What’s happening? Heart Aerospace, a Swedish start up, is building EV airplanes.
Why is this important? Their initial electric airplane, ES-19, will have an operating range of 400 km
How will this be important? Maintenance costs are estimated to be 100 times less.
What’s happening? 8 states, Arizona, Connecticut, Georgia, Iowa, Kentucky, Maryland, Oklahoma and Utah, will allow digital drivers licenses on Apple Devices in apple wallet
Why is this important? users will upload their physical drivers license and a selfie, and other photos for verification, and the state’s approval will add the license to Apple wallet.
How will this be important? 8 states now, but as we grow more accustomed to touches payment systems, this number will grow. Airports are touting it as making travel more seamless.
What’s happening? 3 truck companies are embracing solar power on their trucks: Rush Enterprises; Marten Transport, and Mesilla Valley Transportation
Why is this important? Solar power on trucks is augmenting truck battery life for liftgates, telematics and refrigeration units in trailers
How will this be important? Solar power is also being integrated into their facilities and influencing their suppliers and manufacturers
What’s happening? The trucking industry has a driver shortage. States like Oregon and New York are waiving certification fees for women.
Why is this important? Anticipating a shortage of 100,000 drivers by 2023, recruitment of women is increasingly common.
How will this be important? In 2019 only 6.7% of long haul truckers were women
What is happening? Tennessee Valley Authority, the entity that brought electricity to Appalachia, is pledging to switch its fleet to EV by 2030. With all its passenger cars converting, and 1/2 of its trucks.
Why is this important? The plan is not immediate purchase, but as vehicles age out, the replacement will be an EV, allowing for the EV market to reduce its costs too.
How will this be important? TVA also partnered with the Tennessee Department of Environment and Conservation to build.a network of recharging stations at least every 50 miles on Tennessee’s major highways
What is happening? Rural roads see 50% of traffic fatalities even though the rural population is 1/5. That means the fatality rate is twice that of urban areas.
Why is this important?
How will this be important? Access to funding and creative solutions are the name of the game.
What’s happening? Pennsylvania is adding a miles driven fee to compensate for declining gas tax revenues.
Why is this important? The numbers behind the new miles driven fee:
How will this be important? Every state has declining gas tax revenues and many are considering miles driven fees.
What is happening? Phase 1 goals of identifying technology modes and alignments, two modes are proposed to be carried forward: high-speed rail and hyperloop. Phase 1 recommended moving into Phase 2.
Why is this important? High-speed transportation alternatives would “accommodate the current growth and provide residents with safe, reliable and efficient travel. “
How will this be important? The final recommendation will connect to local transportation systems & link to future high-speed options.
What is happening? Iowa has new rules for autonomous vehicles and trucks that include demarkation on registrations that indicate if the vehicle can operate without a driver on gravel.
Why is this important? Iowa wants to be prepared for when vehicles arrive in Iowa so that business know what the rules of the road are.
How will this be important? Iowa is laying the frame work for restricted registrations of vehicles “just to make sure that they are not operating in scenarios that they might not be prepared for.”
What’s happening? In December 2020 (what is time?) we talked about Peachtree Corners Georgia which had recently installed solar panels into roadways to support EV charging infrastructure.
Why is this important? EV manufacturers say the presence of charging infrastructure increases the sales of EVs
How will this be important? The solar embedded in the road are a partnership between the lab and The Ray solar roadway in Troup County
What’s happening? This November’s ballot in Texas will include a HJR 99 (2021 | TX) that will allow counties to issue bonds or notes to finance development of “an unproductive, underdeveloped, or blighted area.”
Why is this important? Cities already have this authority in Texas
How will this be important? The 2 limits placed on the bond sale include:
What’s happening? A pilot project in Iowa is using data to identify the worst intersections for wrong way driving, the best place to place warning signs, the best kind of warning signs (signage, flashing lights, cameras…)
Why is this important? 60% of wrong way drivers are alcohol impaired, but the pilot is also gathering data on when and where to notify drivers of the wrong way
How will this be important? if this project reduced wrong way driving it can be replicated.
What’s happening? Port queues have increased by 1 hour at the 25 busiest US Ports. Innovation & Automation has been the name of the game. Port of Houston has used innovative smart technology to map and track containers, and the Port of Los Angeles has automated cranes.
Why is this important? Port traffic continues to grow and some unions push back against innovation and automation.
How will this be important? As traffic increased and demand increases, innovation and automation will be vital. Private sector technology will be key to improve port flow.
What’s happening? City fleet adoption in NYC, Columbus OH, led to advancing charging capabilities in the cities.
Why is this important? City fleets are also spurring innovation like solar car ports, robots switching out batteries, and wireless charging.
How will this be important? Its holistic including workforce development with local universities and community colleges to support the new EV charging technologies.
What’s happening? Trying to follow in the footsteps of California’s $200 M ballot proposition that clarified that gig workers are not employees, the Massachusetts Coalition for Independent Work is working a ballot initiative in Massachusetts to clarify that gig workers are not employees
How will this be important? Worker classification will be an ongoing legal, legislative and regulatory free for all.
What’s happening? Aligning with Executive Order 1, Build Back Better investments the President by Executive Order will :
Why is this important? The rational is economic competitiveness with China plus clean air goals, climate change and keeping investments in the U.S.
How will this be important? The Presidential fact sheet sets forth the following EV specific goals:
What’s happening? Miami, FL & Austin, TX will be home to 1,000 Robotaxis taxis beginning in December and Ride Share worries about the impact to ride share drivers.
Why is this important? The Robotaxis are a partnership between Argo AI along with Ford and Lyft.
How will this be important? Innovation and automation are driving factors, but no analysts think a 100% Robotaxis driven fleet will emerge. Drivers will still have a place.
What’s happening? Israel-based company REE Automotive is bringing its skateboard-style EV platform to the USA, with a US headquarters in Austin TX. One of REE’s investors is Koch Strategic Platforms.
Why is this important? REE is focused on fleet vehicle market offering a ready-made, fully customizable electric vehicle platform
How will this be important? REE’s innovation in x-by-wire technology has allowed it ” to develop a modular, fully-flat skateboard chassis with more room for passengers, cargo and batteries that will be highly adaptable to customers.”
What’s happening? Indiana’s Department of Transportation is testing a magnetized concrete for roadways that can charge EVs as they are driven.
Why is this important? Indiana is working with ASPIRE, Advancing Sustainability through Power Infrastructure for Road Electrification, funded by the National Science Foundation, the consortium of government, university, and business is devoted to working up new charging technologies for battery-electric vehicles.
How will this be important? You and I first talked about roads that can charge EVs a couple years ago with a cement being used near Arlanda Airport in Stockholm, Sweden. Follow the dots, ya’ll.
What’s happening? Add Mercedes Benz to Gm, Stallantis, and Renault that have all vowed to move to all EV. In 2025 Mercedes will shift its focus entirely to EV with output of only EVs in 2030.
Why is this important? The EU has a 2035 deadline for all EV vehicle sales. To meet that Mercedes is dedicating $47 Billion to EV development for cars, light commercial vehicles and vans. We see you Amazon Mercedes delivery vans.
How will this be important? Mercedes will take a tighter control of battery manufacturing with partners world wide including in the U.S. likely in the South, likely in Alabama.
What’s happening? We hear a lot about AZ and TX have low regulatory hurdles for autonomous vehicle testing. Some say it lures companies. If you’re Nuro the robot vehicle that delivers things like groceries, you choose Houston, TX because of topography. It’s flat. It is sprawling. It has a diverse customer base.
Why is this important? It’s like that old lawyer saying- if the facts are on your side, argue the facts, if the law is on your side, argue the law. Here, nascent technologies like AVs handle flat roadways better.
How will this be important? one trick ponies no more- think more holistically- its friendly regulations, a willingness to adapt with industry needs- AND population, diversity, topography.
What’s happening? In January, February & March of 2021, EV registrations exceeded regular vehicle registrations by 3X.
Why is this important?
How will this be important? Year over year the number of EVS registered keeps increasing
What’s happening? The Nordic Recycling Center in Gothenburg Sweden will begin recycling WV batteries and fully refining 95% of the materials for future use.
Why is this important? The company says it will ” meet our customers’ needs to dispose of spent batteries in a safe and environmentally sound way”
How will this be important? As EV sales continue to climb, recycling spent batteries is an increasingly new industry
What’s happening? Raleigh, NC is calling for free mass transit
Why is this important? This included an interview with a urban developer that said you’re giving service workers almost a month’s worth of rent by making transit free. That’s a big deal to move workers in and out of a city center.
How will this be important? Free transit also means there’s no changing of cards or money or the passing of germs while that occurs. This is also a permissible use of Federal COVID Relief Funds
Why is this important? Supporters say digital driver’s licenses give the licensee more control over wha information is revealed making it safer, can make online transactions more secure.
How will this be important? More businesses and agencies must adopt the technology necessary to read digital licenses.
What’s happening? Those criticizing regulators for a lack of EV charging infrastructure note that these regulators should follow the gas station model for EV chargers. Others say the gas station model doesn’t work for EVs because 85% of EVs charge at home.
Why is this important? Gas stations are slow to adopt chargers because margins are slim and it is expensive.
How will this be important? It is thought federal funding will have to step in and cover areas that aren’t covered by partnerships that emerge for charging station toll outs.
What’s happening? GM’s Brightdrop unit, Ultium Charge 360, fleet charging service will include at home charging for fleet drivers.
Why is this important? Meet the partnership that’s delivering the EV fleet charging: GM, BrightDrop, Duke Energy company eTransEnergy, EVgo, In-Charge Energy and Schneider Electric
How will this be important? This partnership is looking at how can they offer charging that is most convenient for their drivers. It is a change in perspective from what’s best for the company and focuses on the end user (the drivers) needs, or a stakeholder focus.
What’s happening? Regional Air can be electric air which makes it a reasonable and clean alternative to high speed rail.
Why is this important? Regional Air doesn’t require acquiring large swaths of land for rail.
How will this be important? As our populations increase, we have to develop innovative ways to move people to and fro.
What’s happening? Harris County is bringing on demand feature of ride share to its public transit system by offering on demand transportation between 2 zones for Harris County Transit Plus, for residents living in Generation Park in precincts 1, 2 and 4.
Why is this important? Local governments are embracing innovation to adapt transportation systems to the needs of their residents
How will this be important? Local governments are getting creative whether its partnerships with ride share or adopting ride share like models.
What’s happening? San Francisco is seeing that ride share riders are leaving and moving to taxi services because of increased use of surge pricing.
Why is this important? Cabbies servicing SFO say airport taxi cab rides have doubled.
How will this be important? Flywheel which works like ride share but uses cabs is seeing record breaking use.
What’s happening? A program in the city of Leicester, UK converts the top of bus stops into pollinator gardens for bees.
Why is this important? Green space and pollinator gardens keep the bee populations thriving which in turn cleans the air and keeps agribusiness flourishing.
How will this be important? It’s a great space for nonprofits or local governments to promote tangible low cost projects.
What’s happening? CATO writes about how car dealership protections fit in the modern world. CATO points to 3 reasons why the old justifications for protection no longer fit. (1) dealerships aren’t mom and pop shops anymore “The top 10 dealership groups in America have annual revenues around $100 billion—more than any car company. ” (2) foreign makers make the auto market far more competitive (3) there are different sales models that don’t involve inventory on hand
Why is this important? Things change and adapt including laws and rules.
How will this be important? Tesla isn’t the only vehicle company outside the traditional box, Rivian, Fisker, + more. The market is growing.
What’s happening? Baltimore raised 3 reasons to oppose the proposed high-speed Northeast Maglev between Baltimore and DC. (1)economic equity that negates affordable transportation (2) environmental justice (3)community impacts
Why is this important? The terms have changed since COVID. Now we’re hearing about environmental justice and economic equity.
How will this be important? Setting the post-COVID tone for future project standards.
What’s happening? The former head of the Maryland Secretary of Transportation proposes a beneficiaries pay system that would impose an 8% federal surcharge on all commercial activity occurring on U.S. streets and highways. Costs would be built into our end consumer prices.
Why is this important? Because pay as your drive tax systems are costly to run and implment
How will this be important? The gas tax isn’t keeping pace, and eventually a replacement will be necessary. This tax is based on commercial activity and would be sensitive to inflation and economic trends.
What’s happening? New York City’s Taxi and Limousine Commission voted to block the issuance of new for-hire vehicle licenses for electric vehicles
Why is this important? EVs are currently exempted from existing caps in NYC rules. This vote knocks that exemption out.
How will this be important? The board members took aim at Revel, for wanting to disrupt, the industry. A board member said, ” “This is one of the moments for which the cap was created — to provide a check and balance for businesses whose strategy is to disrupt the system, adding to congestion and putting profits and growth before the City’s welfare,”
What’s happening? Apparently a lot of people inNew Hampshire hit cats with their cars. So many that a bill has been filed to bring justice for the cats. The bill would require you to report the collision to either the animal’s owner or to police
Why is this important? Texas Governor this week vetoed a bill about standards for drinking water for dogs left outside in the Texas heat.
How will this be important? An excellent barometer for how bills that require self reporting function.
What’s happening? MyEV.com has named Oklahoma the #1 EV state.
How is this important? Oklahoma landed on #1 with its unique tax for EVs and that their charging network ensures a charger every 50 miles. The tax is levied based on the size of the vehicle and how much it is driven each year.
Why will this be important? The Oklahoma tax is lower for EVs because OK levies a tax on charging. 3-cent tax per kilowatt hour to charge an electric vehicle (EV). There is no tax for EVs that charge at home.
What’s happening? Consumer Energy has a new incentive program that incentivizes businesses to install charging stations. Consumers has $3 million for its PowerMIFLeet plan to power 200 fast charging locations and more than 2,000 charging stations at homes and businesses in Michigan.
Why is this important? It’s an EV charger plan in the birth place of the US auto industry. If it works there….it works….anywhere.
How will this be important? The plan includes consultations to help planning resources, expert guidance and financial incentive. Basically, they’ll hold your hand through the entire process.
What’s happening? Pennsylvania is doing a deep dive on transportation funding with its 46-member Pennsylvania Transportation Revenue Options Commission, consisting of lawmakers, transportation leaders and others in the transportation industry.
Why is this important? The hype is focused on a 4.2 cent increase and then a repeal of the entire gas tax within a decade.
How will this be important? the laundry list of options is interesting: move police funding to roads, pay as you drive fees, a delivery service tax, increase vehicle registration fees, increase vehicle taxes…
What’s happening? The 2020 resurgence of Black Lives Matters and increased awareness of civil justice issues has towns and states taking actions to make things better. Dumfries Virginia is renaming a road into a historic freed slave community.
Why is this important? Local governments are digging into their histories. These council members discovered that a Dumfries is one of a handful of African-American communities in Northern Virginia prior to the Civil War. The new name, Batestown honors one of the first settlers.
How will this be important? Look at the names of local parks, buildings, roads and get ready for new names.
What’s happening? When the pandemic began, Kansas City, KS waived all mass transit costs.
Why is this important? The pandemic highlighted the impact of transportation costs on essential workers like grocery store cashiers. The policy question became whether that essential worker should use her limited resources for mass transit fees or to put food on the table.
How will this be important? Cities are considering continuing free mass transit, at minimum, for low income riders, veterans, students, communities hit hard by COVID.
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