Wednesday, March 16, 2011

City’s First Electric Vehicle Charging Station at Brooklyn Bridge Park

Here are some pictures of the recently-installed solar-powered electric vehicle charging station at Brooklyn Bridge Park's Pier 1. It was donated to the park by Brooklyn-based renewable energy developer Beautiful Earth Group (BE) and is constructed of two recycled steel shipping containers stacked on top of each other — acquired from a New York vendor. 

The charging station is completely powered by 24 photovoltaic panels on the roof. The panels catch solar rays throughout the day and store them in 40 battery packs inside so there is a constant energy supply for park vehicles. BBP will use the station to charge four of its electric service vehicles — two GEM cars (battery-operated Global Electric Motorcars) and two Toros. 

This will result in more than $200,000 in savings from gasoline costs and tens of thousands of dollars in savings from electricity costs over 25 years (25 years is the warranty for the photovoltaic panels, according to BE Manager of Sustainability Amanda Cleary, although they will probably last much longer). In that period of time, the charging station will have saved more than 530 tons of CO2 from being emitted into the atmosphere.

“The charging station dovetails perfectly with the park’s sustainability ethos, and helps us to extend the ways in which the park has conserved finite resources and limited its carbon emissions,” said Regina Myer, President of Brooklyn Bridge Park in an e-mail message, “While allowing us to use vehicles that are efficient for park maintenance and help us to keep the park in terrific condition for visitors.”

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