Start Your Batteries!

     More than 500 Chesapeake residents are likely one step closer to hitting the streets around town in an electric vehicle.

         They took that step at Annapolis Green’s Electric Vehicle Showcase at City Dock this weekend.

         The annual event — now in its seventh year — is part of National Drive Electric Week, a celebration to heighten awareness of the widespread availability of plug-in vehicles and highlight their benefits.

         “Many of those who came out were new to the idea of electric vehicles,” says Elvia Thompson, co-founder and president of Annapolis Green. “We were glad to provide what we call Driving Electric 101 to them — the basics.”

         Annapolis Green advocates driving electric because it reduces pollution. “It is one way an individual can mitigate the effects of climate change by not spewing greenhouse gases into the atmosphere,” Thompson says.

         Visitors met four dozen electric vehicle owners who showcased their vehicles. “They appreciated that the vast majority of the cars were brought by owners who weren’t trying to sell them anything — other than selling them on the whole EV experience,” says Thompson, who drives an all-electric Bolt.

         “We had some ask about incentives for installing charging stations —particularly at multi-family dwellings like condos and apartments,” Thompson says.

         Event-goers reported a variety of reasons for considering the switch to electric. “Some saw it as inevitable that we will get off fossil-fueled transportation and they wanted to just get to it now,” Thompson says. “Others saw it as a way to save money since they won’t be buying gasoline and because electric vehicles are essentially maintenance-free. There is no oil or transmission fluid or belts to change; just tire rotation and windshield washer blades to replace.”

         Close to 60 vehicles — including a full-size electric bus brought by BGE as well as an electric motorcycle belonging to the Hyattsville Police Department — were on site.

         “People could see that there are now many choices and that not all of them are luxury or super-expensive cars,” Thompson says.

         If you’re in the market for an electric vehicle, Annapolis Green suggests you first do your research before stepping into a dealership. The group provides facts at