The first eVgo Freedom Station in Texas – a Level 3 charger installed outside of a Walgreens in the city of Dallas – is one of such units planned for the Dallas/Fort Worth area. In addition, 50 charging stations will be installed in Houston by the end of 2012. NRG claims that at least half of the chargers – some of them Level 2 units – will be operational by the end of this summer.
NRG Energy says that its eVgo program will work something like this: plug-in vehicle drivers in Dallas and Houston will pay a flat fee of $89 per month for unlimited charging at multiple locations. That plan includes home and public charging, as well as the cost of a residential-charging unit, installation and a three-year service contract.
NRG spokesman David Knox said that Texas' eVgo program is still in its infancy and has signed up only a handful of consumers. However, Knox stated that, "Of the people who either have or will have electric vehicles, 90 percent say they plan to take advantage of our program."
Nation's first privately funded, comprehensive EV charging network now includes Dallas/Fort Worth Metroplex; Interstate 45 connection with Houston slated for 2012
• Media events: Unveiling first eVgo station at 10:30 am Eastern, 9:30 am Central
• NRG CEO David Crane to update media on eVgo during call at 1 pm Eastern, Noon Central
• Governor Rick Perry webcast on future of energy in Texas at 3:30 pm Eastern, 2:30 pm Central
DALLAS (April 8, 2011)-NRG Energy, Inc. (NYSE: NRG) is bringing range confidence to electric vehicle (EV) owners in the Dallas/Fort Worth Metroplex by commencing operations at the first privately funded, eVgosm (ee-vee-go) Freedom Station in Texas, including the first high-speed direct current (DC) charger in Texas that is among the first in the nation. NRG plans to install a total of 70 Freedom Stations in Dallas/Fort Worth and 50 in Houston by the end of 2012, with half in place by this summer. NRG also plans to electrify the Interstate 45 corridor connecting them in 2012.
The first eVgo Freedom Station is located at the Walgreens at 5201 Belt Line Road at Montfort Drive in Dallas. Each Freedom StationSM provides a 480 volt DC fast charger that can add 30 miles of range in as little as 10 minutes and a 240 volt Level 2 charger that can add up to 25 miles of range in an hour. Freedom Stations are available 24/7 and include a customer service tower with a mounted camera, giving customers access to an eVgo service representative or to activate a strobe light, siren and alert law enforcement, even from inside their vehicles. The eVgo network will also include Convenience StationsSM that offer a 240 volt Level 2 charger and are available during the retail host's business hours.
"Inaugurating the first Freedom Station in the Dallas/Fort Worth Metroplex is a critical first step toward making electric vehicles the smart and convenient choice for Texans who want to reduce their cost of driving while contributing to cleaner air and America's energy independence," said David Crane, NRG President and CEO. "We're taking a page from Southwest Airlines when they started out 40 years ago to link the major population centers in Texas. This first station is the start of an ecosystem that will eventually give Texas EV owners the freedom to drive with range confidence throughout the region."
"Thanks to the innovative spirit and hard work of folks at NRG and their eVgo partners, we're closer to a day when electric cars will be a prominent feature on our roadways," Governor Rick Perry said. "I'm proud of our efforts in Texas to foster an environment that frees the private sector to solve problems and meet challenges. Because we steer clear of crippling mandates and work to keep our regulatory structures fair and predictable, Texas has created a favorable business climate that allows companies like NRG to provide the cutting-edge technology and products that will keep our state moving forward."
EVs, powered by electricity generated from domestic fuels, including zero-emission wind and nuclear power in Texas, have the potential over time to reduce dramatically the ongoing transfer of American wealth to oil-producing nations. Transportation accounts for more than a quarter of America's greenhouse gas emissions and in most Texas cities, it is the largest single source of nitrogen oxides emissions.
"The North Central Texas Council of Governments is delighted that the first eVgo electric vehicle charging station is now operational in the Dallas/Fort Worth region with many more to come in the near future," NCTCOG Executive Director Mike Eastland said. "In an area of 6.5 million people, air quality is always a primary concern. NRG's eVgo network is a welcome complement to NCTCOG's Electric Vehicles North Texas program, and we truly appreciate our public- and private-sector partners that have been and continue to be instrumental in preparing the region for electric vehicles."
NRG will provide EV owners in eVgo cities with extremely convenient and affordable unlimited miles "home-and-away" charging plans with no upfront cost and a flat monthly fee. NRG will install and maintain the region's charging infrastructure of home chargers and public fast charging stations conveniently located along major freeways and in key shopping and business districts.
"Electric vehicle ownership should be fun, affordable and convenient, with drivers having complete confidence that a fast charger is never more than a few miles away," said Arun Banskota, President of NRG's EV Services division.NRG is working with the North Texas electricity transmission and distribution company Oncor on zone planning and site selection for the eVgo charging stations in the Metroplex to ensure accessibility and reliability.
"From our installation of more than a million and a half advanced meters to help customers better manage their electricity usage, to the construction of 850 miles of new transmission lines delivering renewable power, Oncor is a leader in making Texas the best place in America to drive plug-in vehicles," said Jim Greer, Oncor's Senior Vice President of Asset Management and Engineering. "By 2012, our investments will enable more than three million homes and businesses in Oncor's service area to use electric vehicle charging technology, such as the NRG eVgo network, when renewable energy availability is highest and the cost of electricity is lowest, supported by the capabilities of
Oncor's advanced meters."
The following companies are working with NRG to make the eVgo network a success:
• Auto Sales and Rental: Gulf States Toyota, Hertz, Mitsubishi Motors, Nissan North America, smart USA, VIA
• Charging Station Host: Best Buy Co., Inc., Crescent Real Estate, Gallery Furniture, H-E-B/Central Market, Memorial City Mall, Park 'N Fly, Spec's Family Partners, Walgreens
• Charging Technologies, Network Services and Smart Energy: AeroVironment, GE, Siemens
• Retail Electric Providers: Green Mountain Energy Company, Reliant Energy, TXU Energy • ReadyforEV(REV)Host:HuffinesCommunities
For more about eVgo partners, visit https://www.evgonetwork.com/About_Us/Partners/
NRG Energy, Inc., a Fortune 500 and S&P 500 Index company, owns and operates one of the country's largest and most diverse power generation portfolios. Headquartered in Princeton, NJ, the Company's power plants provide nearly 25,000 megawatts of generation capacity-enough to supply nearly 20 million homes. NRG's retail businesses, Reliant Energy and Green Mountain Energy Company, combined serve more than 1.8 million residential, business, commercial and industrial customers. With investments in solar, wind and nuclear power, as well as EV infrastructure, NRG is working to help America's transition to a clean energy economy. NRG Energy is a founding member of the Electrification Coalition, a nonpartisan, not-for-profit group of business leaders committed to promoting policies and actions that facilitate the deployment of electric vehicles on a mass scale. More information is available at www.nrgenergy.com.
eVgo is the nation's first privately funded, comprehensive electric vehicle ecosystem. The eVgo network gives EV owners new freedom and range confidence via home charging and fast-charging stations conveniently located at major retailers, employers and along highways across eVgo cities. eVgo allows EV owners to avoid paying large up-front costs for a home charger and provides unlimited use remote charging-all for one low monthly fee. To find out more, or to join the eVgo network, visit www.evgonetwork.com.
Safe Harbor Disclosure
This news release contains forward-looking statements within the meaning of Section 27A of the Securities Act of 1933 and Section 21E of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934. Such forward-looking statements are subject to certain risks, uncertainties and assumptions and include NRG's expectations regarding the electric vehicle and electric vehicle infrastructure and forward-looking statements typically can be identified by the use of words such as "will," "expect," "believe," and similar terms. Although NRG believes that its expectations are reasonable, it can give no assurance that these expectations will prove to have been correct, and actual results may vary materially. Factors that could cause actual results to differ materially from those contemplated above include, among others, general economic conditions, hazards customary in the power industry, competition in wholesale power markets, the volatility of energy and fuel prices, failure of customers to perform under contracts, changes in the wholesale power markets, changes in government regulation of markets and of environmental emissions, and our ability to achieve the expected benefits and timing of our electric vehicle projects.
NRG undertakes no obligation to update or revise any forward-looking statements, whether as a result of new information, future events or otherwise. The foregoing review of factors that could cause NRG's actual results to differ materially from those contemplated in the forward-looking statements included in this news release should be considered in connection with information regarding risks and uncertainties that may affect NRG's future results included in NRG's filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission at www.sec.gov.