Submitted by Edison International
by Paul Griffo, Energized by Edison Writer
Cathedral City High School is the first school to benefit from a state-approved $10 million Southern California Edison pilot to provide electric vehicle charging stations, including all necessary electrical infrastructure, to K-12 schools within the utility’s service area. Construction began recently to install 12 chargers at the school.
“The installation of 12 EV charging stations at Cathedral City High School is the first step in Palm Springs Unified School District’s journey to lower carbon emissions and transition to zero-emission new car fleet goals set by the state of California by 2035,” said Julie Arthur, executive director of Facilities Planning for the district.
Cathedral City High is the first site within the district to install EV charging stations, and Arthur said the project would not have been possible without Charge Ready Schools pilot. The charging stations, which will be owned and operated by SCE, will be available to staff, students and visitors to the campus. She said the project has jump started Palm Springs Unified’s plans for installing EV chargers at additional schools and at the district offices, as well as adding EV charging for the district’s fleet of staff cars.
Along with Cathedral City High, more than 30 other school and administration sites in SCE’s service area are expected to receive about 250 EV chargers through the pilot. SCE worked with school officials to consider the best potential sites, giving priority to communities that are disproportionately affected by pollution and economic hardship.
“Considering what schools have had to deal with to get students back into classrooms, it’s remarkable that Palm Springs Unified and other districts were willing to devote time to getting charging stations installed at their schools,” said Lisa Arellanes, a senior manager with SCE’s eMobility team.
In 2017, the state passed Assembly bill 1082, giving electric utilities like SCE the authority to develop programs to put charging stations at schools. The legislation also includes funding to produce educational materials about EVs for schools, which SCE will use to provide curriculum focused on EVs, transportation, energy and sustainability.
SCE is a leader in electrifying transportation, with the nation’s largest suite of utility transportation electrification programs and initiatives. Earlier this year, SCE launched Charge Ready for light-duty vehicles, a program that will add as many as 38,000 new chargers throughout the company’s service area. Charge Ready Transport for medium- and heavy-duty vehicles, which was launched last year, aims to add charging stations at a minimum of 870 commercial sites, or enough infrastructure to support at least 8,490 industrial EVs.
Over the next few years, SCE’s electric transportation programs will have directly contributed to the electrification of more than 550,000 vehicles through direct rebates and add over 50,000 charging ports to Southern California. According to recent analysis by SCE, 75% of California’s vehicles need to be electric by 2045 in order for the state to achieve its climate goals. That includes 67% of medium-duty vehicles and 38% of heavy-duty vehicles.
Edison International (NYSE:EIX), through its subsidiaries, is a generator and distributor of electric power and an investor in energy services and technologies, including renewable energy. Headquartered in Rosemead, Calif., Edison International is the parent company of Southern California Edison, one of the nation’s largest electric utilities.
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