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Green City: Raleigh Adopts Electric Car Technology

development, increasing population and myriad resources, cities have all the assets necessary for sustainability. The Guide to Greening Cities (Island Press, 2013) is the first book of its kind: written from the perspective of municipal leaders with real experience working to advance green city goals. Sadhu Aufochs Johnston, Steven S. Nicholas and Julia Parzen provide case studies and strategies for overcoming common challenges associated with implementing such projects. The following excerpt, from “Leading from the Inside Out: Greening City Buildings and Operations,” highlights the success of green city goals in Raleigh, North Carolina.

A solar-powered electric vehicle charging station sits in front of the convention center in Raleigh, North Carolina, and Assistant City Manager Julian Prosser insists it’s not just a passing green fad but the wave of the future—in Raleigh and beyond. Vehicle-to-grid technologies, he says, will one day allow the power stored in electric vehicles (EVs) to be fed back into the electric grid so that utilities can avoid buying expensive peak-hour energy. “In my opinion, that’s the holy grail,” Prosser says. The convention center’s charging station is just one of nearly thirty installed so far in Raleigh, which, together with the rest of the Research Triangle region of North Carolina, has emerged as a world leader in electric vehicle readiness, thanks to clear and strong support from policy makers, solid strategic partnerships with key stakeholders, and green city leaders who knew how to turn yesterday’s pitfalls into today’s success.

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