FORT WAYNE, Ind. (WANE) – A press conference Thursday highlighted what progress has been made and what the future holds for electric vehicles and charging stations in Fort Wayne.
The conference coincides with National Drive Electric Week and the launch of GO Electric Vehicle Indiana (GOEVIN), a statewide initiative to bring electric vehicles to Indiana.
Officials announced the next step is to look at replacing the city’s fleet with electric vehicles.
According to a release, the city has been awarded another grant through the Indiana Department of Environmental Management’s VW emissions settlement funds to purchase a fully electric Zeus dump truck to replace a diesel dump truck for the Street Department. That truck is expected to be delivered later this fall, the release said. The city also received bids on the new Ford F-150 Lightning truck which will be available for departments to purchase through a vehicle lease.
The city currently owns 34 Level 2 chargers at 15 locations around Fort Wayne, according to the release. The city provided statistics showing Indiana had 108,888 registered EV & Gas Hybrid vehicles in 2022 (1.68% of total registered vehicles) and 15,949 all-electric vehicles (0.25% of total registered vehicles).
Since installation, the 34 EV chargers have prevented the usage of approximately 43 tons of CO2, 4,400 gallons of gasoline, and 90 barrels of oil. This reduction is equivalent to having nearly 47 acres of forest, or planting nearly 650 trees to capture CO2, according to the release.
The statistics showed between 2018 and 2023, Allen County saw an increase in registered EV + Gas Hybrid vehicles from 1.24% to 2.14%. Indiana as a whole saw an increase from 1.11% to 1.88%. In that same time frame, the county saw an increase from 0.05% to 0.35% for all-electric vehicles, and the state saw an increase from 0.05% to 0.34%.
The release said Greater Indiana Clean Cities, Inc., a non-profit focused on providing education and resources on alternative fuel vehicles, coordinated with the city to identify potential charging sites, assess identified site needs, and write the city’s grant application.
Mayor Tom Henry joined representatives with the Public Works Division, the Indiana Department of Environmental Management and Drive Clean Indiana for the conference.