Burlington and its electric utility have been promoting the use of electric vehicles to reduce carbon emissions and move the city toward its goal of becoming a Net Zero Energy city. On Tuesday the Burlington Electric Department announced a new incentive that provides discounted charging rates for residential customers.
Officials from the city of Burlington and the Burlington Electric Department stood in front of a trio of electric vehicles to announce a new charging rate for residential electric vehicle owners.
Burlington Electric General Manager Darren Springer explained that customers who have a qualifying Level 2 home charging station will be able to charge their vehicle off peak for the equivalent of 60 cents per gallon of gas. “Here’s how that works for our customers. So if you have an electric vehicle already or a plug in hybrid and you have a Level 2 charging station that’s a qualifying charging station you’ll be able to sign up for the rate and set your vehicle to charge between 10 at night and noon the next day. And these vehicles can be set to charge so that you don’t even have to worry about it. You can set it and forget it. You’ll receive a bill credit that will take your rate for the charging from our typical residential rate down to 8 cents per kilowatt hour. And for a typical driver that’s the equivalent of about 60 cents a gallon of gas. So it’s a great deal for EV drivers who want to be able to save money and drive electric.”
In May 2017 Burlington Electric launched a program that offers a $1,200 rebate on the purchase or lease of a new electric vehicle or $1,800 for a qualified low- or moderate-income customer. Springer says those incentives have also changed. “Now you’ll also be able to get $400 towards the purchase and installation of a qualifying Level 2 charging station. In addition for plug in hybrid vehicles that offer some electric driving and some gasoline backup you’ll be able to get a $1,000 purchase or lease incentive and up to $1,500 if you’re a qualifying low or moderate income customer. Those incentives have been increased from our last year’s incentive in an effort to spur even more adoption of driving electric.”
Springer said the initiatives are key to moving Burlington toward becoming a Net Zero Energy city. Burlington Mayor Miro Weinberger calls the Burlington Electric incentives remarkable. “Before today Burlington Electric was already offering a major incentive at the time of purchase. Before today BED (Burlington Electric Department) had already put a huge effort into making sure that you would have places around the city to recharge your vehicle. We already promised BED customers that recharging your vehicle would be done with 100 percent renewable energy. What is happening here in Burlington is new. It is important and it has the opportunity to save your household substantial dollars and an opportunity at the same time to be having an impact on the social and environmental challenge of our time.”
Middlebury College professor Bert Johnson is a Burlington resident who leases a Chevy Bolt and helped pilot the new program. “When Burlington Electric contacted me and asked me to pilot the new electric rate for off peak charging I was really happy to do that. It’s worked great. All you do is you set your charger through an app or through your home charging system to charge this between 10 p.m. and noon the next day and you can take advantage of this great rate. It is easy and I am just glad to be part of a community that makes it as easy as possible to be a good steward of the environment.”
Electric vehicle owners can sign up for the new program now.