Last month, the College added a 2013 Chevy Volt to its fleet, its first plug-in hybrid electric car. The Volt is the second electric vehicle on campus, but the first that can be used on roads. Both additions contribute to the College’s long-term goal to achieve a carbon-neutrality on campus.
The purchase was partially funded by a grant from Central Maine Power, an electric utility company. The grant was very competitive, and covered one half of the total cost of the vehicle, which cost about $30,000.
“One thing that was of benefit for our application was that we will be introducing the vehicle to a lot different users,” said Coordinator for a Sustainable Bowdoin Keisha Payson.
The car will be available for use to all 900 van certified members of the Bowdoin community, including faculty, staff and students.
“It’s a College vehicle that, as long as you’ve gone through the training, you can use for official College business” said Payson.
According to Payson, the vehicle is best suited for shorter trips, since it can travel up to 38 miles using the battery before it begins to use gas.
When the battery does run low, authorized drivers can recharge it right on campus. Barry Woods ’83 helped coordinate the donation of a new charging station from his employer, Clipper Creek, which produces them. This charging station can be found on the side of the Cleaveland Street Apartment building.
Though a few students questioned the cost of the Volt, the response to the new car has been generally positive.
“I think it’s cool,” said Alvaro Quirante ’17. “It’s good that people will be able to drive better cars around.”