About Electric Vehicles
What are the benefits of driving an electric vehicle?
After electricity generation, transportation is the second-leading source of fossil fuel combustion-related CO2 emissions. Automobiles and light trucks represent about 10% of CO2 emissions worldwide, with automobiles in the U.S. alone representing almost half of that global emissions estimate. Beyond CO2, internal combustion-engine vehicles emit numerous other pollutants including carbon monoxide, nitrogen oxides, hydrocarbons and other dangerous particulates – all of which pose a threat to our environment.
Electric vehicles (EV) have zero tailpipe emissions and are much better for the environment than conventional, internal-combustion automobiles. A pure electric vehicle charged with electricity generated from the standard grid mix (national average of fossil, nuclear, and renewable sources) results in 28% less overall CO2 emissions than a combustion-powered car.
Beyond their environmental benefits, electric vehicles offer a number of other advantages including strengthening the country’s energy security4 and decreased fuel costs (on average electric vehicles are three times cheaper to fuel than a gasoline-powered car).
Learn more about the benefits of electric vehicles from:
Learn more about the costs of electric vehicle ownership:
Use our EV savings calculator to find out how much you can save by driving an electric vehicle.
What is an Electric Vehicle (EV) and what are the different types of EVs?
An electric vehicle is any motorized vehicle - from a golf cart to a large bus or commercial truck - that uses electricity for propulsion as an alternative to fossil fuels (gasoline, diesel, or natural gas).
- Hybrid electric vehicles (HEVs) are the most common. These are powered by a combination of gasoline and battery. Examples include the Toyota Prius and Honda Insight.
- Plug-in hybrid electric vehicles (PHEVs) run on battery power and are fueled by plugging in the vehicle to the electricity grid. However, the vehicles still have a gas tank used for back-up power and to enable the car to go longer distances between charges. A popular example is the Chevrolet Volt, but other PHEVs already are or soon will be available, including the Toyota Prius Plug-In and the Honda Insight Plug-In.
- Battery-only electric vehicles (BEVs) are powered entirely by batteries and can only be fueled by plugging the vehicle into the electricity grid. An example is the Nissan Leaf.
Electric vehicles are a small but growing segment of the automobile market, and new models continue to be introduced each year.
Click here to access a list of currently available hybrids, plug-in hybrids and all-electric vehicles. Or visit a manufacturer’s website:
What is the difference between zero tailpipe emissions and zero overall emissions?
Zero tailpipe emissions means that no pollutants are emitted from a vehicle while it is in operation. Electric vehicles have zero tailpipe emissions while they are running off of energy stored in the battery. Zero overall emissions means that, in addition to the lack of tailpipe emissions, no air pollutants are emitted to generate the electricity used to charge the vehicle. For example, an electric vehicle charged with electricity generated by burning coal has zero tailpipe emissions but it is not a zero overall emissions vehicle.
In order to be zero overall emissions, the electricity used to charge the vehicle must be from a clean, emissions-free energy source. Electric vehicles charged with our Pollution Free EV electricity plan are entirely emissions-free.
How do I charge an electric vehicle?
Charging an electric vehicle is simple. A majority of electric vehicle owners are expected to charge their cars primarily at home every night using one of the following charging options:
- Level 1 in-home chargers simply plug into a standard 110V outlet (a three-prong adapter may be required). Although this is the easiest and lowest cost method charge at home, Level 1 chargers take longer to charge your vehicle.
- Level 2 in-home chargers plug into a 220V outlet (the same type of outlet that your clothes dryer uses). Although Level 2 chargers reduce the charging time, they typically cost more than Level 1 chargers.
The development of a public charging infrastructure is underway. This will enable electric vehicle owners to charge their vehicles around town using DC fast chargers. DC chargers provide a substantial charge in a matter of minutes (similar to gas stations). For example, the Nissan LEAF can get a 30 mile boost in about 10 minutes.
Some companies, such as Green Mountain’s affiliate eVgo, are offering solutions comprising home electric vehicle charging docks and publicly available network charging stations bundled together and available as a multi-year, fixed-rate charging plan.
Learn more about charging an electric vehicle here:
Who is eVgo and how do I enroll in the Complete Charging Plan?
eVgo is a growing ecosystem of home electric vehicle charging docks and network charging stations conveniently located at major retailers, airports, multi-family communities and employers across eVgo cities. Two of eVgo’s programs, Ready for EV (REV) Multi-Family and REV Workplace, offer charging stations dedicated to each individual EV driver at partner locations. This will provide a reliable solution for people who do not live in single family homes or have an extensive commute that makes workplace charging desirable.
eVgo, an official partner of Green Mountain Energy Company, offers Green Mountain customers an integrated, 100% emissions-free Complete Charging Plan at home and away. The Complete Charging Plan combines Pollution Free EV with a home charging dock and related equipment, and access to a networked charging infrastructure.
To enroll in the Complete Charging Plan, contact eVgo directly at 1-877-455-3833. When enrolling in the plan, be sure to notify eVgo that you are a Green Mountain customer. eVgo will handle the rest.
To learn more about eVgo and the Complete Charging Plan, visit their website.
Signing Up for Pollution Free EV
How do I sign up for Pollution Free EV?
Signing up for Pollution Free EV is easy.
1. Become a Green Mountain customer in Texas if you aren’t already.
2. Drive a qualified electric vehicle (for more info, see Qualifying Vehicles FAQ below)
- Vehicle ownership is not required so car leases qualify!
- You are also eligible if a member in your household drives an electric vehicle.
3. Call Green Mountain to switch to Pollution Free EV:
- New Residential Customers: 866-301-3120
- Existing Green Mountain Customers: 866-785-4668
Which electric vehicles qualify for Pollution Free EV?
Here’s a list of pre-qualified vehicles:
- Chevrolet Volt
- Nissan Leaf
- Fisker Karma
- Ford Transit Connect
- Think City
- Ford Focus Electric
- Smart ForTwo
- Ford Escape Plug-in
- Toyota Prius Plug-In
This list is not comprehensive and continues to change as more electric vehicles are made available. If you don’t see your plug-in electric vehicle listed or you converted your car to a plug-in after it was originally purchased, give us a call to confirm eligibility.
As part of process to verify your eligibility, we will ask you to provide Green Mountain with documentation to verify that you, or a member of your household, drive(s) a qualified vehicle. Documents containing both the customer’s or household member’s name, and the name, make, and year of the qualified electric vehicle, such as a copy of a valid, in-force Texas automobile insurance policy, usually suffice.
Can existing Green Mountain customers on a contract switch to Pollution Free EV?
Yes, existing Green Mountain customers who drive an electric vehicle that are already on a contract can switch to Pollution Free EV. You will not be charged a cancellation fee. However, enrolling on the new product represents a new commitment that will last for 12 months after the switch date.
Do I need to be enrolled in the Complete Charging Plan or be customer of eVgo to sign-up for Pollution Free EV?
No, Pollution Free EV is available to all Green Mountain customers who drive a qualified plug-in electric vehicle or share a household with an electric vehicle driver.