NWE Announced Electric Vehicle Fleet
NorthWestern Energy announced that it plans to include electric vehicles in the company’s fleet.
They also plan to make investments in the infrastructure to locate electric vehicle charging stations in the company’s Montana and South Dakota service territories.
The change is being made because “electric vehicles are efficient and the electricity we provide is about 60% carbon free,” explains Bob Rowe, CEO NorthWestern Energy. He said electric vehicles “are efficient and the electricity and fleet electrification is a good way to reduce carbon. Electric vehicles will also help lower fuel and maintenance costs, making it a solid business decision.”
Rowe went on to explain, advances in electric vehicle technology and price drops make this the right time to begin making a transition to electric.
NorthWestern Energy’s fleet includes two electric power take-off bucket trucks, one in Huron, S.D. and the other in Billings, and a Chevrolet Bolt electric vehicle in Bozeman, today.
Bozeman Division Manager Pat Patterson uses the Bolt EV, added to the fleet in August. The NorthWestern Energy Bozeman Service Center has a charging station that is available for public use.
“I’ve used it to go to NorthWestern Energy’s sites in Yellowstone National Park, a 240 mile round trip, and I had plenty of range,” Patterson said.
By 2030, NorthWestern Energy will replace 30% of light-duty class vehicles, about 100 cars and light trucks, with battery electric vehicles and plug-in electric hybrids. NorthWestern Energy will begin replacing vehicles and equipment at the end of its life with electric alternatives in 2021. By 2030, 20% of new medium and heavy-duty vehicles and 30% of new bucket trucks will be electric vehicles. All new forklifts replacements will be electric by 2030.