On August 19, Boise and Republic Services officials unveiled the newest addition to the city’s recycling fleet – an electric truck. By the end of this year, according to Republic Services’ schedule, five new electric trucks will travel Boise’s streets to pick up recycling and help improve Idaho’s air quality and climate.
But Boise isn’t the first city in the Treasure Valley to go electric for waste management. According to Idaho Power, J&M Sanitation replaced two of its diesel-fueled trucks with electric ones for garbage pickup in Kuna. J&M Sanitation worked with Idaho Power while planning a charging station for the new trucks, which allowed J&M to receive incentive dollars for its installation.
In the Wood River Valley, Mountain Rides launched four new electric buses on August 23. The transit authority is the first in Idaho to begin electrifying its fleet. These new buses replace aging ones that ran on diesel and got less than 5 miles per gallon.
Electric vehicles (EV), like these buses and trucks, produce zero tailpipe emissions and provide other benefits like less maintenance requirements, quieter engines, and cost savings compared to fossil-fuel powered ones.
Station to station
Meanwhile, now you can charge up your electric vehicle at a Hells Canyon campground. Idaho Power recently opened a new EV charging station at Copperfield Park near Oxbow, Oregon. This marks the utility’s first charger installation for the public to freely use. Chargehub, a resource that maps charging stations, provides a good look at the various charging network in Idaho.
Up north in Sagle, Northern Lights Electric Cooperative recently applied to install a fast-charging station at it’s headquarters. The utility requested funds from the Volkswagen diesel emissions settlement administered in Idaho by the state’s Office of Energy and Mineral Resources.
These two stations are the most recent examples of a fairly extensive EV-charging network in Idaho. Boise’s public libraries also offer free charging; and fast-charging stations appear about every 50 miles along Interstates in Idaho. Here are two maps that show the location of places to charge up your EV whether you’re at home or travelling for work or recreation:
Idaho needs more EVs and you can help!
The Idaho Conservation League continues to encourage people, businesses, and cities to purchase EVs and move away from fossil fuel. We want you to be part of the effort promoting EVs in Idaho. Here are some actions you can take to support EVs and clean transportation in Idaho:
- In the market for a new car? Consider an EV. You can compare various EVs online and call around to dealerships to schedule test drives. There’s also a growing used EV market, such as Fairly Reliable Bob’s Electric Alley in Boise. Whether you buy new or used, be sure to look at all the money you’ll save by going electric!
- Don’t need a new car, but support EVs? Not everyone is currently in the market for a new car, but everyone can help increase the number of EVs on the road. Reach out to your elected officials and ask them to support EVs in Idaho — such as purchasing electric vehicles for their fleets, providing financial incentives for EV ownership, updating building codes so new construction is EV ready, or investing in more EV chargers.
Thanks for your support in promoting EVs and the benefits they provide for Idaho’s air and climate!