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NY investing in electric vehicle charging stations



electric vehicle charging stations

New York state is taking steps to make electric cars more feasible — despite the low popularity of the cars in the state.

As part of Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s Reform the Energy Vision, which hopes to cut greenhouse gas emissions 40 percent by 2030 from 1990 levels, the New York Power Authority recently announced that 32 electric car-charging stations would be installed in different areas around the state.

“Our ultimate goal is (to) install chargers at key intervals across the state to quash range anxiety,” wrote Power Authority Media Relations Specialist Lynne Smith in an email, “and this first tranche of sites is aimed at building out the skeleton that will put us on the path to doing exactly that.”

The initiative, called EVolve NY, plans to construct 200 new 150 kilowatt direct current fast chargers along major traffic corridors in the state. Construction on the first 32 sites will begin in 2019.

Smith said charging stations will be placed near Watertown on I-81 and I-87 near Plattsburgh and in the North Country, in addition to stations in Syracuse, Buffalo, Rochester, Albany and Yonkers.

“People are definitely driving electric cars, and we want to see more of it,” Smith said. “We believe that if we make it easier for them to drive electric cars and make the charging stations more accessible, even more people will want to drive them.”

The locations were chosen by the New York Power Authority based on metrics such as traffic volume, projected electric car adoption, and amenities and drive convenience, Smith said.

The eventual cost of the 200 stations is slated to be around $250 million, according to NYPA. The individual cost of a station can run between $1,000 and $50,000 according to a 2015 report by the Times Telegram.
Regionally, electric cars aren’t in high demand, although interest is rising.

Chris Lawrence, senior planner for the City of Utica, said that the station at Utica City Hall has seen an average of nine unique users and 26 sessions of use every month for the past six months. That has increased since February, when only two different motorists used the station.

Lawrence added in an email that it appeared “electric vehicles are increasing in popularity nationwide,” and that the city might consider installing another station if local demand increases.

Currently, there are electric charge stations at the Fairfield Inn by Marriot, DoubleTree by Hilton Hotel Utica, a Utica Supercharge station in the North Utica Shopping Center and a charging station at SUNY Polytechnic Institute, in addition to the station at Utica City Hall.

There are also charging stations at a few local car dealerships.

“It’s a market that really isn’t tapped into around here,” said Nissan Carbone Manager Clay Lonis, “and some people are trying to tap into it more than others.”

Lonis says that the incentives to buy and sell electric are getting better for consumers, even if only a few electric cars are being sold locally.

“We are going to be going down that road more and more, and I do see ourselves getting charging stations in the near future,” Lonis added.

The state’s announcement comes after the Trump Administration recently revealed a climate report, required by Congress, which argues that climate change will cause hundreds of billions of dollars of damage in upcoming decades.

The announcement also comes as American car manufacturer General Motors announced plans to idle five factories in North America and stop producing numerous types of cars — including the Chevrolet Volt, a plug-in electric hybrid, due to lagging sales.

Rome Mayor Jacqueline Izzo says she has seen a few cars using the charging station at Rome City Hall. The city did buy three Chevrolet Volts with money from grants, though the return on investment on them takes a long time, she said.

As she put it, many people are looking for more reliable cars in the area.

“Anything that anyone can do to lessen the carbon emissions to improve the environment is a good idea,” she said. “But I think people would want to have a hybrid just to know that if something happened, they could fall back on the gas so they’re not going to get stuck in a snowstorm somewhere.”


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9-year-old genius to graduate university




Laurent Simons

(CNN) – A child prodigy from Belgium is on course to gain a bachelor’s degree at the tender age of 9.

Laurent Simons is studying electrical engineering at the Eindhoven University of Technology (TUE) — a tough course even for students of an average graduate age.

Described by staff as “simply extraordinary,” Laurent is on course to finish his degree in December.

He then plans to embark on a PhD program in electrical engineering while also studying for a medicine degree, his father told CNN.

His parents, Lydia and Alexander Simons, said they thought Laurent’s grandparents were exaggerating when they said he had a gift, but his teachers soon concurred.

“They noticed something very special about Laurent,” said Lydia.

Laurent was given test after test as teachers tried to work out the extent of his talents. “They told us he is like a sponge,” said Alexander.

While Laurent comes from a family of doctors, his parents have so far not received any explanation as to why their child prodigy is capable of learning so quickly.

But Lydia has her own theory.

“I ate a lot of fish during the pregnancy,” she joked.

The TUE has allowed Laurent to complete his course faster than other students.

“That is not unusual,” said Sjoerd Hulshof, education director of the TUE bachelor’s degree in electrical engineering, in a statement.

“Special students that have good reasons for doing so can arrange an adjusted schedule. In much the same way we help students who participate in top sport.”

Hulshof said Laurent is “simply extraordinary” and praised the youngster.

“Laurent is the fastest student we have ever had here,” he said. “Not only is he hyper intelligent but also a very sympathetic boy.”

Laurent told CNN his favorite subject is electrical engineering and he’s also “going to study a bit of medicine.”

His progress has not gone unnoticed and he is already being sought out by prestigious universities around the world, although Laurent’s family wouldn’t be drawn on naming which of them he is considering for his PhD.

“The absorption of information is no problem for Laurent,” said his father.

“I think the focus will be on research and applying the knowledge to discover new things.”

While Laurent is evidently able to learn faster than most, his parents are being careful to let him enjoy himself too.

“We don’t want him to get too serious. He does whatever he likes,” said Alexander. “We need to find a balance between being a child and his talents.”

Laurent said he enjoys playing with his dog Sammy and playing on his phone, like many young people.

However, unlike most 9-year-olds, he has already worked out what he wants to do with his life: develop artificial organs.

In the meantime, Laurent has to finish his bachelor’s degree and choose which academic institution will play host to the next stage in his remarkable journey.

Before that, he plans on taking a vacation to Japan for an undoubtedly well-deserved break.

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New award to honor arts and activism named after Lena Horne




Lena Horne

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Gang members slam BMW into rival and his 8-year-old son in Harlem




Gang members slam BMW into rival and his 8-year-old son in Harlem

Two gangbangers aimed their BMW like a missile at a father and his 8-year-old son on a Harlem sidewalk in a horrifying incident captured by video distributed by police Thursday.

The BMW — driven by a man police believe is a member of the Gorilla Stone Bloods Gang — was zeroed in on the father, a rival gang member, said cops.

Around 3:45 p.m. Nov. 6, the boy and his father were walking on W. 112th St. by Adam Clayton Powell Jr. Blvd. when the BMW jumped the sidewalk and slammed into them both, said cops.

Father and son were both knocked through a gate.

The BMW driver then backed up — and its driver and passenger, also believed to be a gang member, jumped out of the car and ran toward the father and the son.

One of the attackers slashed the father, identified by sources as 32-year-old Brian McIntosh, who’s served prison time for robbery and bail jumping.

McIntosh and his son went to Harlem Hospital. Miraculously, the boy escaped serious harm.

McIntosh was so adamant about refusing to help police catch his attackers that the young boy’s mother had to file a police report alleging he was the victim of a crime, police sources said.

Cops released video of the attack, and ask anyone with information about the suspects to call Crime Stoppers at (800) 577-TIPS.


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