Recharge Wrap-up: NRG eVgo interview, Opoli uses BYD e6

Sparrow EV; BC Fracking Causes Earthquakes

An interview with NRG eVgo executives gives insight into America's largest fast-charger network. Arun Banskota and Brendan Jones spoke with Charged EVs about their rapid but deliberate expansion, the role utilities play, and the future of charging electric vehicles. They say they are not just focused on city-to-city travel, but also on allowing EV drivers to traverse the large footprints of metropolitan areas. NRG eVgo is also preparing itself for the near future when charging technology "is double or more the capacity of current technology," something Banskota says is "right around the corner." Read the full interview at Charged EVs.

The Sparrow has found a second life as an EV. Originally planned as a small, affordable commuter car, the company had trouble fulfilling orders and eventually went bankrupt. Currently, owned by ElectraMeccanica, the Sparrow has been electrified. The new Sparrow EV has a 90-mile range and a four-hour charging time. "This is the Volkswagen Beetle for the 21st century," says ElectraMeccanica owner Jerry Kroll. "After 30 minutes of driving it, you feel like you are wearing Robert Downey Jr.'s Ironman suit. You're wearing the car. It's the way driving should be." Read more at Ecomento.

New research shows that fracking has changed British Columbia's seismicity and caused more than 1,000 earthquakes since 2006. According to federal and provincial scientists, these quakes have measured up to a magnitude of 4.3, when it was previously thought that hydraulic fracturing wouldn't cause anything but microquakes with a magnitude of 2.0 or less. Some hydrogeologists argue that there is not enough monitoring of the province's fracking industry, which they fear could do damage to groundwater and infrastructure. Read more from The Tyee.

BYD will provide 50 e6 EVs to the Opoli name-your-price ridesharing service in San Diego. As part of a green initiative by Opoli, the company is using the electric crossovers from BYD in addition to natural gas airport shuttles to reduce emissions and traffic. "Our company was built on innovation, and unlike most auto manufacturers we are excited for the future of the shared-use economy and pioneers such as Opoli," says BYD President Stella Li. "We are proud to be working with another California company in creating jobs, cleaning the air and leading the way." Read more at Green Car Congress, or in the press release below.

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Opoli Partners with BYD, Supplying Electric Car Fleet to San Diego

SAN DIEGO, July 24, 2015 /PRNewswire/ -- Opoli Technologies, the transportation app revolutionizing the rideshare industry in Southern California, announces its new partnership with BYD Motors Inc, a world leader in the automotive industry, including high-efficiency automobiles. In efforts to not only reduce traffic congestion through ridesharing in San Diego, BYD will provide 50 of their zero-emissions e6 EVs to the Opoli fleet as part of a green initiative.

The all-electric crossover SUV from BYD will join Opoli's natural gas airport shuttles late summer 2015, in efforts to decrease emissions. Opoli has been allotted charging spaces at the docking station at the San Diego International Airport. The e6 is ideal for drivers and fleet operators as its range exceeds 180 miles on a full charge. Opoli in San Diego will join other US cities such as New York, San Francisco and Chicago, to use the battery-electric crossover SUV in taxi and municipal fleets.

"At Opoli we continue to seek out and provide an affordable solution to the transportation problems that plague metropolitan areas," said Rattan Joea, founder and CEO of Opoli Technologies. "Teaming up with BYD provides riders not only cost-effective solutions, but a green alternative in San Diego. We want to bring viable share-ride experiences to the commuting community. Riders would have fastest Wi-Fi available in the vehicles, along with other perks, to make the most of their commutes."

As one of the world's most popular fleet-utility electric vehicle, the e6 has been incorporated in fleets in Hong Kong, London, Singapore, Rotterdam, Bogota and Rio de Janiero. A team of more than 15,000 BYD engineers have developed the advanced technologies needed to create the environmentally-friendly, BYD Iron-Phosphate batteries, in-wheel hub motors and regenerative braking systems. The break-through battery is fire-safe and can be completely recycled.

"BYD is very excited to be partnering with Opoli Technologies," said Stella Li, BYD Motors President. "Our company was built on innovation, and unlike most auto manufacturers we are excited for the future of the shared-use economy and pioneers such as Opoli. We are proud to be working with another California company in creating jobs, cleaning the air and leading the way."

This partnership comes weeks after Opoli launched services in the San Diego area, including being the first rideshare service permitted at the San Diego International Airport. Opoli functions under a name-your-price model, connecting drivers and ride seekers to agree upon a fare, with 100 percent of the fare going to the driver's account. Rides can be booked in advance or on demand via the Opoli app, available for iOS and Android.

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