Forward to the Zero Emissions Future.
By Emett Stasiuk
The Zero Emissions Gift Card Fund Act
To stimulate the economy and get Americans and American products moving again, but at a reduced over-all cost and with less over-all pollutants, with less use of foreign oil, and a bright future of leadership in the emerging “green” industries, including Alternative Energy industries, Zero Emissions transport, slow/organic/local food and clothes: Once again, the government will send gifts to all Americans.
In alignment with the concept of reducing driving miles-- as is a part of every plan to reduce greenhouse and other emissions-- Every American and American Company gets a Zero Emissions Gift Card good for $500, and more over time, of purchases that qualify. The Zero Emissions Gift Card Fund will be considered a “carbon offsetter” qualified to be paid by any carbon cap and trade fees and/or payments from polluters. Carbon offset credits will be made avail for purchase by payments to the fund. Carbon offset donations to the fund shall be considered as fully tax deducible charity donations.
The Zero Emissions Gift Card Fund will be a charitable gift program with funds easily transferred between and among individuals, groups, families, and/or other charities. With giving so enabled the America people shall control a significant amount of money and so direct it where it can do the most good in the frame of their own lives, for themselves or for others, be them near or far.
For children under 15, their gift(s) shall be redirected to the parent(s) or guardian(s). Individuals and or companies can re gift to other individuals' and/or companys' accounts. Zero Emission Gift Cards can be reloaded with legal tender if desired, a fully tax deductible charity donation.
Charity donations to the entire Zero Emission Gift Card Fund could be instantly split as cash value to all citizen’s individual accounts. (I would like to see funding for $100 each card per year for maintenance, repair, and other ongoing costs.) Some small percent will be needed for the Zero Emissions Gift Card Fund system setup and program maintenance.
Products purchased with a Zero Emissions Gift Card would become normal personal or company property.
Qualifying Purchases, 3 Types
1st Type: Zero Emissions Vehicles and Gear
· Bikes, skateboards, wheelchairs, roller blades, etc. including gear, equipment, and parts.
· Walking/Running Gear, including shoes.
· Electric Power scooters, chairs, bikes, boards, skates, and any other type of small Human Power / Electric Hybrid vehicles. All-electric or otherwise Zero Emission (Zero hydrocarbons in the exhaust) cars, motorcycles, vans, trucks, trains, and/or buses.
· Any tools and other products specific to support, repair, use, upgrade, modify, or design Zero Emission vehicles.
· Research expenses specific Zero Emission vehicle design. For example: Power hub or Mag-Lev bearing designs for bikes or electric cars, or materials research for lighter bike frames.
· Apparel products, including, but not limited to: helmets, hats, gloves, shoes, pants, rain-gear, and performance bags or back-packs.
· Clothes that have specific transportation safety and/or weather resistant features shall qualify.
2nd Type: Zero Emissions Fuel and Power
· Food: Fuel for biking and walking is food. Food shall be a qualifying purchase if it passes certain specifications. A rating system shall be designed that will allow products to be judged on the basis of these, and possibly other, factors: bulk or other packaging considerations, food miles per lbs transported, micro-nutrient value per calorie, and/or sustainable or organic farming methods used, sold in a "farmers" (local) market. Ideal: organic or sustainably farmed, locally sourced, minimally processed food that is sold in bulk would qualify due to any one of those qualities.
· Plug-in electric and human powered garden tools and supplies, for example, shovels, rakes, electic lawn mowers, non-GMO seeds. Note, organic flower gardens are great too: food for the bee and insects.
· Solar energy collecting systems for persons, homes, businesses, and/or vehicles.
· Wind, Wave, Run-of-the-River, and other innovative power generating and storage systems.
· Utilities payments for Alternative power sources.
· Research expenses specific to Zero Emissions fuels, including non-GMO foods, and power generation and/or storage.
3rd Type: Zero Emissions Services
· Public Transport (Buses, light rail, other) tickets and/or passes.
· Personal transport services with zero emission vehicles.
· Post or delivery services with zero emissions.
· Consulting, Installation, and other services which provide customers with Zero Emission (or otherwise improved "Green") solutions to typically polluting situations. Included here are waste management improvements to reduce, reuse, and/or recycle wastes. For example, Unpollute fund could be applied for payment for a rain water capture system.
· Payments to a food service provider that uses 75% or higher of “foods and services that qualify.”
Benefits of the Zero Emissions Gift Card Fund Act:
· Equivalent to some free transportation, food, and services becoming available for citizens.
· Economic Stimulus: Boosts consumer demand for needed technologies evoking the power of the free market to create jobs to fill the demands. Keeps our scientists and engineers and workforces busy and improving, not falling behind.
· Popular use would lower the Unite State’s dependency on oil and foreign oil.
· Fewer traffic jams saving travelers and businesses time and fuel.
· Helps mitigate some health care costs in the long run due to a healthier public, based on cleaner air in densely populated urban areas, and on more people getting exercise.
· Lowers wear of the roads, saving road maintenance costs.
· Lightweight and other Zero Emission Transportation devices abound, and a boon to this industry will cascade savings throughout the economy.
· Bikes and many other Zero Emission transport devices require no liability insurance, providing an opportunity for personal savings.
· Widespread use would help to push back the global warming threat and other pollution related threats, such as ocean acidification.
· This simple fund coupled with gift cards for American citizens would also improve National Security based on a rise in local/small food sources, and a lessening of our dependency on foreign oil.
· Clearer Air, Healthier Soils, and Cleaner Water.
Zero Emissions Gift Card Fund Website
An official web site is setup for login access by all Americans and companies linking them to the huge database of qualifying items, services, their own account info, and other public records concerning the Zero Emissions Gift Card Fund.
The Website enables those who wish to, to sign on, and be taught about:
1) Ecological commuting options and considerations, and then be guided towards an appropriate and preferred choice of products from around the globe. Percent of American parts and labor shall be clearly listed, as well as country of origin so that individuals can make informed choices. Remember, items produced in the USA are usually manufactured in more ecologically sound ways than similar products from some other parts of the world. But solutions to an individual’s commuting challenges can best be found when the whole world of ideas is open.
2) Sustainable food, food security, and “green” rating factors.
3) Alternative energy and conservation, and more.
A gasoline tax may be needed to keep the price from falling too low. And other controls where oversight may be needed.
Dealers, Manufacturers, and service providers of qualifying products, parts, and services can expect overwhelming increases in demand, and thus financial support for loans to small and large businesses that are involved in these industries shall be prioritized by the appropriate federal agencies.
Other Related Legisation
COMMITTEE ON TRANSPORTATION AND INFRASTRUCTURE
THE SURFACE TRANSPORTATION AUTHORIZATION ACT OF 2009
A BLUEPRINT FOR INVESTMENT AND REFORM
Chairman James L. Oberstar, Ranking Member John L. Mica, Chairman Peter A. DeFazio, and Ranking Member John J. Duncan, Jr.
June 18, 2009
FEDERAL HIGHWAY ADMINISTRATION
CONGESTION MITIGATION AND AIR QUALITY IMPROVEMENT PROGRAM
The Congestion Mitigation and Air Quality Improvement (CMAQ) Program provides funds to States for transportation projects to improve air quality and reduce congestion. First enacted in ISTEA, CMAQ was designed to assist States and metropolitan regions in meeting the transportation sector’s goals established by the Clean Air Act Amendments of 1990 (P.L. 101-549) to help meet national air quality objectives.
CMAQ funds are apportioned to States based on formulas that take into account factors such as a State’s attainment of National Ambient Air Quality Standards (nonattainment areas) and former nonattainment areas that are now in compliance (maintenance areas). Program funds are distributed based on a formula considering an area’s population by county and the severity of its ozone and carbon monoxide problems within the nonattainment or maintenance area. Each State, however, is guaranteed a minimum apportionment of one-half percent of the year's total program funding, even if the State does not have any nonattainment or maintenance areas. States receiving a minimum apportionment can use CMAQ funds anywhere in the State for projects eligible for either CMAQ or the Surface Transportation Program (STP).
CMAQ funds can be used for a broad range of activities and transportation control measures, including: capital and operational assistance for new transit service; ride share and park and ride lots; pedestrian and bike projects; alternative fuel vehicles; diesel idling reduction and diesel retrofit; and marketing programs designed to educate the public about air quality issues and transportation alternatives. CMAQ funds cannot be utilized to build single occupancy vehicle lanes.
States are required to reserve 10 percent of STP funding for use on transportation enhancement (TE) activities, such as pedestrian and bicycle projects…
SURFACE TRANSPORTATION AUTHORIZATION ACT
The Surface Transportation Authorization Act creates the Office of Livability within the FHWA, which will bring focus and leadership to move alternative modes of transportation forward, and improve the livability and sustainability of the nation’s communities.
The Office of Livability:
Provides leadership nationally and at DOT on issues pertaining to livability
Provides leadership to expand surface transportation options; advance sustainable modes of transportation including transit, walking, and bicycling; enhance integrated planning to support the creation of livable communities; and serve as a clearinghouse of information and statistics related to livability and sustainability.
Reforms livability and sustainability programs
Requires the Office to administer the following programs: Safe Routes to Schools; Transportation Enhancements; Recreational Trails; Scenic Byways; and the U.S.Bicycle Route System; the Office will also be responsible for the finalization of the Nonmotorized Transportation Pilot Program and the dissemination of the results of the program;
Works collaboratively with other DOT offices that administer the following programs: Metropolitan Planning; Statewide Transportation Planning; Transit in Parks; and New Starts and Small Starts; and
Compiles and disseminates best practices and provides technical assistance related to the delivery of nonmotorized transportation projects; the development of livable communities and the integration of land use and transportation policies; transit oriented development; comprehensive street design policies and principles and practical design standards; and implementation of the U.S. Bicycle Route System.
Develops statistical and analytical capabilities
Ensures a high standard of statistical and analytical capabilities related to the prevalence and benefits of sustainable transportation options; and
Transmits this information to the Congress on a biennial basis and makes this information widely available.
Encourages and supports the adoption of comprehensive streets policies and principles
Oversees implementation of the new requirement that all Federal-aid projects under title 23 consider comprehensive street design policies and principles and practical design standards; and
Establishes best practices, model legislation, and technical assistance to support States, regions, and localities in adopting and implementing comprehensive street design policies.
Establishes a U.S. Bicycle Route System
Creates a system for approval and designation of routes on a national system of bicycle routes.
FEDERAL TRANSIT ADMINISTRATION
INTERMODAL AND ENERGY EFFICIENT TRANSIT FACILITIES PROGRAM
Historically, Federal transportation policy and surface transportation investment programs have focused on addressing the needs of individual modes rather than improving intermodal connectivity and linkages. Similarly, the current surface transportation programs do not place a priority on increasing energy efficiency or reducing reliance on carbon-producing oil.
With the passage of ISTEA in 1991, Congress established a policy for a National Intermodal Transportation System, defining it as “all forms of transportation in a unified, interconnected manner, including the transportation systems of the future, to reduce energy consumption and air pollution while promoting economic development and supporting the Nation’s preeminent position in international commerce.” ...
... The American Reinvestment and Recovery Act of 2009 (Recovery Act) (P.L. 111-5) appropriated a small amount of funding for public transit agencies to make capital investments that will reduce the energy consumption and greenhouse gas emissions of their public transportation systems. This funding is temporary and must be authorized to become a viable tool to assist public transportation providers in addressing barriers to intermodal connectors and improving energy efficiency and sustainability.
SURFACE TRANSPORTATION AUTHORIZATION ACT
The Surface Transportation Authorization Act consolidates and strengthens the current intermodal facilities set-aside and the temporary energy efficiency transit grants by creating an Intermodal and Energy Efficient Transit Facilities Program (Intermodal and Energy Program).
Under this consolidated discretionary program, transit projects must either be intermodal facilities that provide the traveling public with access to more than one mode of transportation, or projects that reduce the energy consumption or greenhouse gas emissions of public transportation systems and facilities.
23 GAO, Intermodal Transportation: DOT Could Take Further Actions to Address Intermodal Barriers (2007).
The Surface Transportation Authorization Act:
Establishes an enhanced Intermodal and Energy Program to place a focus on, and expand funding available for, intermodal and energy efficient projects
Allows States and local governmental authorities to compete for discretionary FTA funding for projects that will help public transit agencies realize cost savings by reducing their energy consumption;
Provides funding for construction of intermodal passenger transit facilities; includingintercity bus, intercity rail, and other intermodal and joint development transitfacilities;
Provides funding for improvements to lighting, heating, cooling, or ventilationsystems at existing public transportation stations and facilities; the purchase or retrofit of energy efficient rolling stock; improvements to energy distribution systems; and additional energy related capital investments; and
Directs FTA to give priority to project sponsors seeking energy grants based on the total energy savings or emissions reductions that are projected to result from the investment, and projected energy savings and emissions reductions as a percentage of the total energy usage and emissions of the public transit agency.
Provides for a minimum funding amount for rural areas so that communities of all sizes will benefit from intermodal and energy efficient transit projects
Directs the Secretary to set aside up to 5.5 percent of the Intermodal and Energy
Program funds for projects in areas with populations of less than 50,000 individuals.
FEDERAL TRANSIT ADMINISTRATION
TRANSIT IN THE PARKS PROGRAM
Congestion in and around popular national parks, wildlife refuges, national forests, and other Federal lands causes traffic delays and noise and air pollution that substantially detract from the visitor’s experience and the protection of natural resources. In 2005, Congress established the Transit in the Parks Program to provide the public with a variety of travel options as an alternative to solo vehicular trips within and through these important protected areas. TEA 21 first authorized a study of transit needs in national parks and related public lands, and the program was made permanent in SAFETEA-LU. The goals of the program, as currently included in SAFETEA-LU, are to conserve natural, historical, and cultural resources; reduce congestion and pollution; improve visitor mobility and accessibility; enhance visitor experience; and ensure access for all, including persons with disabilities.
Transit in the Parks grants may be sought for planning or capital projects inside or in the vicinity of any Federally-owned or managed park, refuge, or recreational area that is open to the general public. Program funds may be used for transit vehicles and systems, such as buses, railcars, or intelligent transportation projects, as well as other types of alternative transportation appropriate to a park setting, such as waterborne transportation, bicycle, and pedestrian facilities. The program currently is one of the smallest discretionary transit programs, and is authorized at only $25 million per year. However, demand far exceeds available funds. In FY 2006 and 2007, the program was able to fund only about half of the project proposals evaluated.24
The program is currently administered by the FTA in partnership with the Department ofthe Interior (DOI), which requires FTA to develop cooperative arrangements with the DOI that provide for technical assistance, policy, and procedural guidance, and assistance in developing procedures and criteria for the planning, selection, and funding of projects, as well as program implementation and oversight. In short, nearly all aspects of program administration must be run through two Federal agencies, resulting in a dramatically slower grant award and project delivery timeframe. For example, the Transit in the Parks funds for FY 2008 were not announced until the beginning of FY 2009 and, to date, many of these funds have not yet been obligated.
SURFACE TRANSPORTATION AUTHORIZATION ACT
The Surface Transportation Authorization Act:
Streamlines the Transit in the Parks Program
Removes duplicative Federal agency roles by consolidating all program administration functions within FTA.
24 FTA, Guidance for Project Proposals, Alternative Transportation in Parks and Public Lands Program (2008).
! Increases the overall funding amount for eligible transit projects
“National Energy Security Act of 2009”
To enhance the energy security of the United States by diversifying energy sources for onroad transport, increasing the supply of energy resources, and strengthening energy infrastructure, and for other purposes.
IN THE SENATE OF THE UNITED STATES
April 1, 2009
Mr. DORGAN (for himself and Mr. VOINOVICH) introduced the following bill; which was read twice and referred to the Committee on Finance
To enhance the energy security of the United States by diversifying energy sources for onroad transport, increasing the supply of energy resources, and strengthening energy infrastructure, and for other purposes.
Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives of the United States of America in Congress assembled,
SECTION 1. SHORT TITLE; TABLE OF CONTENTS.
(a) Short Title- This Act may be cited as the ‘National Energy Security Act of 2009’ or the ‘NESA of 2009’.
SEC. 2. FINDINGS.
Congress finds that--
(1)(A) high and volatile international oil prices represent an unsustainable threat to the economic and national security of the United States; and
(B) approximately 40 percent of the primary energy demand of the United States is met by petroleum, the price for which is set in a fungible and opaque international market vulnerable to geopolitical instability and increasingly complex barriers to investment;
(2)(A) it should be the goal of the United States to reduce the oil intensity (the number of barrels of oil required to generate $1 of gross domestic product) of the national economy from 2008 levels by at least 50 percent by calendar year 2030 and by at least 80 percent by calendar year 2050; and
(B) reduced oil intensity is a primary means for improving the resilience of the economy to high and volatile international oil prices;
(3) the transportation sector of the United States is critical to breaking the oil dependence of the United States because the transportation sector--
(A) accounts for nearly 70 percent of total national oil consumption;
(B) is 97 percent reliant on petroleum for the delivered energy needs of the sector; and
(C) remains an industry of vital national significance and importance;
(4)(A) electrification of short-haul transportation represents a likely pathway to reduced oil dependence;
(B) electrified ground transport--
(i) promotes fuel diversity because the electric power sector uses a diverse range of feedstocks; and
(ii) relies on a portfolio of fuels that are largely domestic and have prices that are generally less volatile than oil; and
(C) electricity prices are generally stable relative to oil because the price of fuel in the electric power sector is a small portion of the cost of delivered energy;
(5)(A) electrification of transportation will require a more modern, technologically advanced national electric power system that draws on a variety of location-constrained generation sources sited in a range of geographic areas; and
(B) a national transmission system that efficiently delivers power across long distances to load centers should be a high priority;
(6)(A) widespread deployment of electric vehicles and supporting infrastructure is a long-term process that will require a national commitment over many years;
(B) in the interim, steps can be taken to minimize the danger that oil dependence poses to the economic and national security of the United States; and
(C) it is critical to--
(i) support the continued growth of the domestic biofuels industry;
(ii) foster domestic production of conventional fuels for which infrastructure and technology exist; and
(iii) support deployment of additional renewable, cleaner fossil, and nuclear generating capacity for providing the necessary low emissions, reliable, and dispatchable power that is essential for the electricity supply of the United States;
(7)(A) a robust, dynamic, and diverse biofuels industry is an important component of a secure United States liquid fuels system; and
(B) a stable market for biofuels, including widespread deployment of flexible fuel vehicles, can reduce oil consumption as the United States transitions to electrified ground transport;
(8)(A) domestic production of oil and natural gas from the Outer Continental Shelf of the United States is a safe and secure means for increasing energy security in the near-term;
(B) high oil import levels in the United States present an added threat to the economy in addition to general price volatility; and
(C) in 2008, the United States net deficit in petroleum trade amounted to more than $380,000,000,000, or nearly 60 percent of the total trade deficit;
(9) a highly skilled, well trained, and adaptable workforce is vital to the economic and energy security of the United States; and
(10)(A) addressing the twin challenges of energy security and global climate change now and in the future will require the United States to use all instruments of national power, including the military and diplomatic and intelligence services;
(B) the United States must develop short-term policies and strategies that--
(i) protect key energy infrastructure;
(ii) secure critical geographic transit areas;
(iii) mitigate political instability from energy suppliers; and
(iv) strengthen the domestic industrial base required for the development and widespread implementation of clean energy technologies; and
(C) over the long-term, the United States must focus national security organizations on gaining greater clarity on world reserves of energy and strengthening relationships with certain key nations.
TITLE II--TRANSPORTATION SECTOR
Subtitle A--Electrification of Transportation Sector
SEC. 201. MINIMUM FEDERAL FLEET REQUIREMENT.
Section 303 of the Energy Policy Act of 1992 (42 U.S.C. 13212) is amended--
(1) in subsection (b)--
(A) by redesignating paragraphs (2) and (3) as paragraphs (3) and (4), respectively;
(B) by inserting after paragraph (1) the following:
‘(2) PLUG-IN ELECTRIC DRIVE VEHICLES- Of the total number of vehicles acquired by a Federal fleet under paragraph (1), at least the following percentage of the vehicles shall be plug-in electric drive vehicles (as defined in section 131(a) of the Energy Independence and Security Act of 2007 (42 U.S.C. 17011(a))):
‘(A) 10 percent for fiscal year 2012.
‘(B) The applicable percentage for the preceding fiscal year increased by 5 percentage points (but not to exceed a total of 50 percent) for fiscal year 2013 and each subsequent fiscal year.’; and
(C) in paragraph (3) (as redesignated by subparagraph (A)), by inserting ‘or (2)’ after ‘paragraph (1)’; and
(2) by striking subsection (c) and inserting the following:
‘(c) Allocation of Incremental Costs- Subject to the availability of funds appropriated to carry out this subsection (to remain available until expended), the General Services Administration shall pay the incremental cost of alternative fueled vehicles over the cost of comparable gasoline vehicles for vehicles that the Administration purchased for the use of the Administration or on behalf of other agencies, in a total amount of not to exceed $300,000,000 for any of fiscal years 2012 through 2016.’;
(3) in subsection (f), by adding at the end the following:
‘(4) COMPLIANCE- Compliance with this subsection shall not relieve the Federal agency of the obligations of the agency under subsection (b).’; and
(4) in subsection (g), by striking ‘fiscal years 1993 through 1998’ and inserting ‘each fiscal year’.
SEC. 202. USE OF HOV FACILITIES BY LIGHT-DUTY PLUG-IN ELECTRIC DRIVE VEHICLES.
Section 166(b)(5) of title 23, United States Code, is amended--
(1) in subparagraph (A), by striking ‘Before’ and inserting ‘Except as provided in subparagraph (D), before’;
(2) in subparagraph (B), by striking ‘Before’ and inserting ‘Except as provided in subparagraph (D), before’; and
(3) by adding at the end the following:
‘(D) USE BY PLUG-IN ELECTRIC DRIVE VEHICLES-
‘(i) DEFINITION OF PLUG-IN ELECTRIC DRIVE VEHICLE- In this subparagraph, the term ‘plug-in electric drive vehicle’ has the meaning given the term in section 131(a) of the Energy Independence and Security Act of 2007 (42 U.S.C. 17011(a)).
‘(ii) USE OF HOV FACILITIES- A State agency--
‘(I) shall permit vehicles that are certified as low emission and energy-efficient vehicles in accordance with subsection (e) that are light-duty plug-in electric drive vehicles, and that are purchased on or before December 31 of the calendar year described in clause (iii), as determined by the Secretary, to use HOV facilities in the State; and
‘(II) shall not impose any toll or other charge on such a vehicle for use of a HOV facility in the State.
‘(iii) CALENDAR YEAR- The calendar year referred to in clause (ii)(I) is the calendar year during which, as determined by the Secretary, the aggregate number of plug-in electric drive vehicles sold in the United States during all calendar years exceeds 2,000,000.
‘(iv) PETITION- A State may petition the Secretary to limit or discontinue the use of a HOV facility by plug-in electric drive vehicles if the State demonstrates to the Secretary that the presence of the plug-in electric drive vehicles has degraded the operation of the HOV facility.’.
SEC. 203. RECHARGING INFRASTRUCTURE.
(a) Definitions- In this section:
(1) LOCAL GOVERNMENT- The term ‘local government’ has the meaning given the term in section 3371 of title 5, United States Code.
(2) PLUG-IN ELECTRIC DRIVE VEHICLE- The term ‘plug-in electric drive vehicle’ has the meaning given the term in section 131(a) of the Energy Independence and Security Act of 2007 (42 U.S.C. 17011(a)).
(3) RANGE EXTENSION INFRASTRUCTURE- The term ‘range extension infrastructure’ includes equipment, products, or services for recharging plug-in electric drive vehicles that--
(A) are available to retail consumers of electric drive vehicles on a non-discriminatory basis;
(B) provide for extending driving range through battery exchange or rapid recharging; and
(C) are comparable in convenience and price to petroleum-based refueling services.
(1) IN GENERAL- The Secretary shall conduct a study of--
(A) the number and distribution of recharging facilities, including range extension infrastructure, that will be required for drivers of plug-in electric drive vehicles to reliably recharge the electric drive vehicles;
(B) minimum technical standards for public recharging facilities in coordination with the National Institute of Standards and Technology; and
(C) the concurrent technical and infrastructure investments that electric utilities and electricity providers will be required to make to support widespread deployment of recharging infrastructure and the estimated costs of the investments.
(2) COMPONENTS- In conducting the study required under this subsection, the Secretary shall analyze--
(A) the variety and density of recharging infrastructure options necessary to power plug-in electric drive vehicles under diverse scenarios, including--
(i) the ratio of residential, commercial, and public recharging infrastructure options necessary to support 10 percent, 20 percent, and 50 percent penetration of plug-in electric vehicles on a city fleet basis;
(ii) the ratio of residential, commercial, and public recharging infrastructure options necessary to support 10 percent, 20 percent, and 50 percent penetration of plug-in electric vehicles on a national fleet basis; and
(iii) the potential impact of fast charging on penetration rates and utility power management requirements;
(B) whether use of parking spots with access to recharging facilities should be limited to plug-in electric drive vehicles;
(C) whether model building codes should be amended to cover recharging facilities; and
(D) such other issues as the Secretary considers appropriate.
(3) REPORT- Not later than 1 year after the date of enactment of this Act, the Secretary shall submit to the appropriate committees of Congress a report on the results of the study conducted under this subsection, including any recommendations.
(c) Grants and Loans to State and Local Governments for Recharging Infrastructure-
(1) IN GENERAL- Effective beginning October 1, 2010, the Secretary shall establish a program under which the Secretary shall provide grants and loans to local governments to assist in the installation of recharging facilities for electric drive vehicles in areas under the jurisdiction of the local governments. The Secretary shall provide funding under this section to State or local governments to pay not more than fifty percent of the recharging infrastructure cost.
(2) ELIGIBILITY- To be eligible to obtain a grant or loan under this subsection, a local government shall--
(A) demonstrate to the Secretary that the applicant has taken into consideration the findings of the report submitted under subsection (b)(3), unless the local government demonstrates to the Secretary that an alternative variety and density of recharging infrastructure options would better meet the purposes of this section; and
(B) agree not to charge a premium for use of a parking space used to recharge an electric drive vehicle other than a charge for electric energy.
(3) GUIDELINES- The Secretary shall establish guidelines for carrying out this subsection that are consistent with the report submitted under subsection (b)(3).
(4) AUTHORIZATION OF APPROPRIATIONS- There is authorized to be appropriated to the Secretary to carry out this subsection a total of $250,000,000 for grants and a total of $250,000,000 for loans, to remain available until expended.
SEC. 204. LOAN GUARANTEES FOR ADVANCED BATTERY PURCHASES.
Subtitle B of title I of the Energy and Independence and Security Act of 2007 (42 U.S.C. 17011 et seq.) is amended by adding at the end the following:
‘SEC. 137. LOAN GUARANTEES FOR ADVANCED BATTERY PURCHASES.
‘(a) Definitions- In this section:
‘(1) PLUG-IN ELECTRIC DRIVE VEHICLE- The term ‘plug-in electric drive vehicle’ has the meaning given the term in section 131(a).
‘(2) RANGE EXTENSION INFRASTRUCTURE- The term ‘range extension infrastructure’ includes equipment, products, or services for recharging plug-in electric drive vehicles that--
‘(A) are available to retail consumers of electric drive vehicles on a nondiscriminatory basis;
‘(B) provide for extended driving range through battery exchange or rapid recharging; and
‘(C) are comparable in convenience and price to petroleum-based refueling services.
‘(b) Loan Guarantees- The Secretary shall guarantee loans made to eligible entities for the aggregate purchase by an eligible entity of not less than 5,000 batteries that use advanced battery technology within a calendar year.
‘(c) Eligible Entities- To be eligible to obtain a loan guarantee under this section, an entity shall be--
‘(1) an original equipment manufacturer;
‘(2) a vehicle manufacturer;
‘(3) an electric utility;
‘(4) any provider of range extension infrastructure; or
‘(5) any other qualified entity, as determined by the Secretary.
‘(d) Regulations- The Secretary shall promulgate such regulations as are necessary to carry out this section.
‘(e) Authorization of Appropriations- There are authorized to be appropriated such sums as are necessary to carry out this section.’.
SEC. 205. STUDY OF END-OF-USEFUL LIFE OPTIONS FOR MOTOR VEHICLE BATTERIES.
(a) In General- In combination with the research, demonstration, and deployment activities conducted under section 641(k) of the Energy and Independence and Security Act of 2007 (42 U.S.C. 17231(k)), the Secretary shall conduct a study on the end-of-useful life options for motor vehicle batteries, including recommendations for stationary storage applications and recyclability design specifications.
(b) Report- Not later than 1 year after the date of enactment of this Act, the Secretary shall submit to the appropriate committees of Congress a report on the results of the study conducted under subsection (a), including any recommendations.
Subtitle B--Medium- and Heavy-Duty Vehicles
SEC. 211. MAXIMUM WEIGHT STUDY.
(a) In General- The Secretary of Transportation, in consultation with the Administrator of the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, shall conduct a study to investigate whether oil savings goals can be achieved in the trucking industry without adverse safety consequences by determining the safety impacts and other effects of increasing the maximum allowable gross weight for vehicles using the Interstate System to allow for larger, more fuel-efficient tractor-trailers.
(b) Study Components- In conducting the study under this section, the Secretary of Transportation shall--
(1) determine whether a vehicle with a supplementary sixth axle and a gross weight of up to 97,000 pounds that is traveling at 60 miles per hour is capable of stopping at a distance of 355 feet or less;
(2) determine whether the use of the Interstate System by vehicles described in paragraph (1) would require a fundamental alteration of the vehicle architecture that is commonly used for the transportation of goods as of the day before the date of the enactment of this Act;
(3) analyze the safety impacts of allowing vehicles described in paragraph (1) to use the Interstate System; and
(4) consider the potential impact on highway safety of applying lower speed limits on such vehicles than the speed limits in effect on the day before the date of the enactment of this Act.
(c) Report- Not later than 1 year after the date of the enactment of this Act, the Secretary shall submit a report to Congress that contains the results of the study conducted under this section, including a determination by the Secretary as to whether permitting vehicles with a supplementary sixth axle and a gross weight of not more than 97,000 pounds to use the Interstate System would have an adverse impact on highway safety.
(d) Definition- In this section, the term ‘Interstate System’ has the meaning given that term in section 101(a) of title 23, United States Code.