In April, the Electric Drive Transportation Association (EDTA) started targeting 580,000 movers and shakers in the Washington, D.C. area who listen to WTOP, 103.5 FM with a series of ads called "The Electric Drive." You can now listen to the EDTA's ads online to see how this major partnership is trying to explain electric drive to the masses. Brian Wynne, the EDTA president, wrote in an email that the radio campaign and the EDTA's Earth Day Congressional briefing were quite effective in getting the word out. Wynne described the hearing as "standing-room only" and that one of the specific goals of the EDTA Policy Committee is to build support for a plug-in vehicle tax credit this year. EDTA is also working with lawmakers to ensure that the Department of Energy will continue to fund electric drive research and development in FY09. Promoting EVs and hybrids and PHEVs has got to be something of an easy sell in a time of $120+ barrels of oil, but it still takes a good amount of effort to make people understand how electric cars will/might change our future. I mean, Toyota reps still have to reassure people that you don't need to plug in a Prius. Read Wynne's full email after the jump.



Wynne's EDTA email:

If you have visited Washington, DC lately, you may have heard this or other EDTA radio spots on WTOP, the area's most-listened-to station. This campaign, which includes several EDTA members' participation, brings our message to 580,000 listeners during the morning drive time, and to WTOP's online community with a microsite full of information about electric drive, how it works, and how EDTA members are leading the charge to a new kind of transportation. Click here to hear all of EDTA's commercials.

In addition to the airwaves, EDTA continues to effectively communicate with policy makers in person. During our successful Earth Day Congressional Briefing on Capitol Hill, the standing-room only crowd heard from a tremendous lineup of EDTA representatives discussing how federal policies can accelerate the mainstreaming of efficient, clean electric drive technology, and specific goals for the industry as a whole.

As the effects of $120+ oil continue to hurt businesses and consumers, EDTA is vigorously promoting electric drive's benefits to various audiences in different ways-via the radio to those idling in Washington's famous traffic, by continuing our role as an effective champion on Capitol Hill, by expanding our online presence, and by establishing strategic partnerships to better serve our membership.

All of our activities this year will add to the importance of the EDTA Conference & Exposition 2008 in Washington this December. I encourage you to reserve your exhibit space today and make plans to attend. It promises to be an influential industry event, held on the cusp of a new administration and new Congress, with great opportunities to advance critical electric drive legislative priorities and cement our role as the authoritative source for electric drive answers.

Regards,

Brian Wynne

advocacy update:
EDTA's Congressional briefing on April 22 was a great success. EDTA members provided the audience of Congressional staff, industry stakeholders and press a comprehensive view of electric drive technology and possibilities.

The briefing also served as a perfect platform to reinforce our legislative goals in this session. The EDTA Policy Committee is focusing, in part, on FY09 appropriations for the Department of Energy. The newly authorized, and ongoing, electric drive research and development and demonstration and deployment programs are critical in maintaining the momentum of the industry. We are working with policymakers to ensure that meaningful funding is provided for them in the upcoming year.

The Policy Committee has also begun a legislative campaign to support creation of a plug-in electric vehicle tax credit this year. Although the window for action is small, the Policy Committee is making the most of widespread interest in plug-in technologies and concern about record gas prices. Members of the committee are reaching out to their Congressional representatives to highlight the importance of the credit and ask for their support for action. EDTA is also circulating a letter of support for action on the tax credit that will be provided to the House and Senate tax writing committees.
[Source: EDTA]

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