Community Celebrates Innovative Transportation Future at SunCommon SUN CARnival

Locals Test the Smart Pairing of Solar + Electric Vehicles


COLCHESTER, Vt – Under sunny solar-friendly skies, Vermonters gathered at St. Michael’s College on Sunday afternoon for the 2nd annual SunCommon Sun CARnival. During the community event homeowners browsed the 14 models of electric vehicles, popped the hoods and enjoyed test rides with the vehicle owners. Given the state’s rural geography, electric vehicles provide a clean energy alternative for many Vermonters seeking a solution for their daily travels.As of July 2015 there were nearly 950 plug-in electric cars registered in Vermont representing an 85% increase since 2013. Electric cars can be found across the state in two-thirds of Vermont communities. In addition to the savings on fuel, electric cars generally cost less to maintain and they qualify for a federal tax credit, which reduces the purchase or lease price.SunCommon Sun CARnival electric vehicles

“These events show our community members how electric cars are benefiting the lives of Vermonters, saving them money on gas and maintenance, keeping pollutants out of the air and providing a safe and fun drive, which is increasingly powered by renewable energy,” said David Roberts, Coordinator of Drive Electric Vermont.Curiosity prompted conversations about fuel savings, charging stations and affordability. “My wife and I bought a Nissan Leaf 2-1/2 years ago and almost a year ago we went solar, too.  I love my EV and I enjoy driving it so much that I volunteer with United Way by giving rides through the Neighbor Rides program,” said Adam Bortz of South Burlington. “We never would have thought we could do all this but both solar and my electric vehicle are so accessible now that it made perfect sense to us.”

SunCommon Sun CARnival electric vehicles

Solar and electric vehicle enthusiasts explore EVs, electric-assist bicycles and SunCommon’s solar programs at the Bristol Sun CARnival on Sunday July 26, 2015. SunCommon will be hosting the next Sun CARnival at St. Michael’s College on Sunday Aug 16th.

With electric bills in hand, many solar homeowners and EV drivers dispelled the myth that solar and electric vehicle technologies are cost prohibitive. “We’re going to come out ahead $1,000 in combined gasoline, propane and electrical yearly expenses; and create a much smaller carbon footprint! We’re really happy with these changes in our lives and our ability to share our energy output with our neighbors as well,” said Natalie Good of St. Albans. The Good family powers their home, efficient heat pump heating system and electric vehicle with their SunCommon solar system.SunCommon hosted Sunday’s event as a low-pressure opportunity for Vermonters to educate and engage with fellow community members and organizations. “While folks likely don’t know how many kW hours they’re using everyday, they certainly understand how much money they’re spending on energy bills,” said Clary Franko of SunCommon. “Solar and EV technology are a perfect fit and save people money. Driving an EV for the equivalent of $1 per gallon of gasoline is pretty appealing.”

SunCommon Sun CARnival electric vehicles

Local residents enjoy free Open Hearth pizza after test-riding electric vehicles and electric-assist bicycles at SunCommon’s Sun CARnival in Bristol on Sunday July 26, 2015. SunCommon will be hosting the next Sun CARnival at St. Michael’s College on Sunday Aug 16th.

SunCommon Sun CARnival electric vehicles


ABOUT US: SunCommon is an innovative certified Vermont Benefit Corporation that directs us to attend to the triple bottom line of people, planet and profit. We believe everyone has the right to a healthy environment and safer world – and clean energy is the place the start. Our mission is to tear down the barriers that have made renewable energy inaccessible. We do that by making it easy and affordable for all Vermonters to go solar.

ABOUT DRIVE ELECTRIC VERMONT: Drive Electric Vermont is a public-private partnership working to increase the use of plug-in electric cars in Vermont. The Vermont Energy Investment Corporation coordinates the program in collaboration with the State of Vermont, industry representatives, and a broad array of stakeholders.

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