For Jim Stack, the future of transportation is clear: EVs are a more advanced and clean technology than gas cars, and it is time to give up the internal combustion engine vehicle. All we have to do is get legislators to understand the benefits of EVs!
His first EV in the late 1990s was a Chevy S10 that had been used in the Arizona Public Service (APS) Solar & Electric 500 challenge. Since his first EV, Jim has advocated for supportive EV policies. Unfortunately, in his time, he also witnessed the recall and crushing of EVs by GM, as detailed in the documentary, “Who Killed the Electric Car?” This only served to charge Jim up to advocate for bolder EV policies.
A key piece of policy he worked on was adopting the zero-emission vehicle (ZEV) mandate for Arizona in 2008, a program modeled after California’s ZEV standards which require automakers to sell a certain number of EVs in the state, thus giving consumers more choice. Unfortunately, the policy was opposed by the auto dealer associations and the Arizona Department of Environmental Quality and didn’t move forward. Stack is still working on enacting that mandate.
In advocating for EVs, Stack says his primary motivations are twofold. He believes it is all about giving people a choice in the cars that they can buy. It’s for that reason he is frustrated by automakers who destroyed their EV models in the early 2000s. His second motivation is to minimize the local air pollution from transportation that creates a brown haze over the city of Phoenix.
In conversation with Stack, he discusses developing relationships with legislators, his personal experience with EV policies, and the need to go all-in for plugging in.