Rebates Help Tackle Vermont’s Number One Source of Carbon Pollution: Driving
Vermont’s electric utilities are letting customers across Vermont know they can now save up to $15,000 when they buy or lease new lectric vehicles (EVs) and plug-in hybrid vehicles (PHEVs) thanks to new Vermont state rebates that can be combined with utility rebates and federal tax credits. One of the biggest barriers to making the switch to cleaner driving is the upfront cost of a new vehicle, and new state rebates of up to $5,000 aim to help middle- and low-income Vermonters switch to cleaner driving with electric vehicles.
Transportation is the number one source of carbon emissions in Vermont, and switching to an EV is the biggest, most effective step Vermonters can take to reduce their carbon footprints, because Vermont’s energy supply is low carbon and getting greener all the time. Switching to an EV offsets more than 10,000 pounds of carbon per year. According to Drive Electric Vermont, the cost of ownership for EVs is less than gas-fueled vehicles because they require less maintenance and, on average, charging an EV is equivalent to paying approximately $1.50 or less per gallon for gas. The exact amount of savings customers receive depends on their income, the type of EV they buy or lease, and rebates their utility offers.
Washington Electric Coop offers income eligible members $1,900 in funds; all other WEC households are eligible for $1,200 for new or leased electric vehicles, and $950 toward a new plug in hybrid . “These new state incentives paired with rebates we already offer make it a great time to get an electric vehicle while making a big difference in your carbon footprint,” said Patricia Richards, general manager of the Washington Electric Cooperative.
BED recently expanded its extensive offering of EV incentives, which include $1,200 rebates on new and leased EVs and PHEVs, with an additional $600 and $300 for low- and moderate-income customers who buy or lease EVs and PHEVs, respectively, plus $800 rebates on pre-owned EVs and PHEVs. “BED appreciates the opportunity to partner with the State of Vermont to make it even more affordable for Burlingtonians to drive electric, with enhanced rebates available for low- and moderate-income customers,” said Darren Springer, BED general manager. “Driving electric is a key part of Burlington’s Net Zero Energy strategy. It helps keep more dollars in the local economy and is a meaningful way to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and address our climate emergency.”
Green Mountain Power (GMP) already offers customers up to $2,500 in rebates, depending on income, on new all electric vehicles, $1000 for plug-in hybrids and $750 for used EVs and PHEVs. GMP will also give customers a free Level-2 home car charger ($600 value) when they buy or lease a new EV. “EV driving is an affordable and highly effective way to address the climate crisis – and the combined rebates make the savings even greater. Since transportation produces most of Vermont’s emissions, it is great that team Vermont is working together to help Vermonters switch to greener driving,” said Mari McClure, GMP’s incoming president and CEO.
Vermont Electric Cooperative (VEC) offers bill credit incentives for new or used plug-in vehicles, whether purchased or leased. VEC also offers a $250 bill credit for the purchase of a qualifying Level II vehicle charger. “VEC is pleased to partner with the State of Vermont and the other utilities in offering electric vehicle incentives. Using cleaner fuels for transportation is an essential part of a greener transportation future, and will help us reduce climate impacts,” said Rebecca Towne, VEC’s chief executive officer. “We hope Vermonters take advantage of all the incentives available to them for vehicles and charging systems and that the programs are tremendously successful in driving electric vehicle adoption.”
When more Vermonters drive electric, key benefits flow 100 percent back to all customers, helping to drive down costs to maintain the grid. Customers can combine rebates to build bigger savings, and they can work with participating dealerships to get the rebates upfront, applied as a discount on the price of an EV. Details and terms and conditions about the state and utility rebate and incentive programs are on their websites:
Kristin Kelly, Green Mountain Power