GPA promotes wider use of electric vehicles on Guam

Present at the GPA Electric Vehicle turnover to the University of Guam Center for Island Sustainability presentation on April 14, 2021 were: Shown (L-R) at back: Pedro Roy Martinez, Consolidated Commission on Utilities Commissioner; GPA General Manager John M. Benavente, P.E.; GPA Assistant General Manager Engineering & Technical Services John J. Cruz, Jr., P.E.; and Victor Torres, GPA Engineer II. Front: Consolidated Commission on Utilities Chairman Joey T. Duenas; University of Guam President Dr. Thomas W. Krise; Dr. Austin Shelton, Director of the UOG Center for Island Sustainability and SEA Grant; Dr. Anita Borja Enriquez, UOG Senior Vice President and Provost; and Dr. Rachael Leon Guerrero, UOG Director for Office of Research and Vice Provost. (Photo courtesy of GPA)

The Guam Power Authority is promoting the wider use of electric vehicles on Guam to protect the island’s environment and to lessen dependence on fossil fuels.

GPA is now assessing the impact of EVs on Guam’s power grid to ensure its electric generation and transmission systems are capable of supporting the introduction of a large number of EVs.

The agency is also preparing to meet the additional electrical demand associated with EV charging while meeting the electrical power needs of its customers.

In addition, GPA is working with the local automobile industry to support the proliferation of EVs on Guam.

GPA is preparing to “power the road” by:

· Performing regular reviews of the capabilities of its distribution system and making necessary upgrades;
· Testing EVs with employees; and
· Providing information to guide customer’s choices about EVs.

According to GPA, electric vehicles will deliver important long-term benefits as they become a more prevalent means of transportation.

The agency cited research showing that average household vehicles travel 30 miles per day. By charging car batteries with off-peak electricity, EV owners can realize savings in the annual cost to operate vehicles.

GPA said calculations based on current fuel prices show an annual fuel
cost savings of $860 per year.

EVs also have a reduced cost to maintain because there are so few moving parts, thereby eliminating the need for fluid replacements and engine repair.

EV lease to UOG

GPA recently leased an electric vehicle to the University of Guam’s Center for Island Sustainability.

“We’re a partner-in-sustainability with the University of Guam and today furnished one Nissan Leaf all-electric vehicle to the University of Guam (UOG) Center for Island Sustainability,” stated GPA General Manager John M. Benavente.

“GPA initiated its electric vehicle trial fleet expansion in 2017. We are pleased that UOG will showcase GPA’s all-electric vehicle to help educate and engage the island community on the benefits of vehicle electrification,” added Benavente.

A two-year Memorandum of Agreement (MOA) for Demand Side Management Electric Vehicle Lease, was signed both GPA and UOG. GPA shall maintain ownership of the vehicle throughout the lease period, which may be renewed annually by GPA.

The electric vehicle shall be used for public outreach, educational, and professional business use only.

“GPA’s Demand Side Management program(s) share similar objectives to include energy conservation, equipment/fuel efficiency, and reducing negative impacts on the environment; and we fully support UOG’s use of this EV will to encourage and increase its visibility, as well as serve to bolster market penetration on island,” stated Consolidated Commission on Utilities Chairman Joey T. Duenas.

The benefits through this partnership include:

= Educating and engaging the community on the benefits of vehicle electrification;
= Encouraging the use of electric vehicles through UOG’s and its showcase during event; and
= Providing additional data to support GPA’s electrical fleet expansion and charging infrastructure development.