New Electric Vehicle Charging Stations Expand Public Access and Help Reduce Air Pollution in National Parks and Gateway Communities

Friday, July 5, 2019NPF News
BMW OF NORTH AMERICA DONATED 100 ELECTRIC VEHICLE CHARGING STATIONS FOR LOCATIONS IN AND NEAR NATIONAL PARKS

WASHINGTON—One hundred electric vehicle (EV) charging stations have been donated for locations in and near national parks across the country, thanks to a partnership with the National Park Foundation, National Park Service (NPS), the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE), and BMW of North America.

“Thanks to public-private partnership, electric vehicle drivers can enjoy a quintessential national park road trip,” said Will Shafroth, president of the National Park Foundation. “Not only will drivers benefit, but also the businesses and communities at the doorstep of our treasured national parks.” 

This project kicked off in April 2017 with the first electric vehicle charging stations installed at Thomas Edison National Historical Park.

“The automobile has long been central to the great American vacation in national parks,” said National Park Service Deputy Director P. Daniel Smith. “While our treasured landscapes offer familiar vistas time after time, the automobile has changed greatly, and parks want to meet the needs of our visitors who use electric and plug-in hybrid electric vehicles. Through this joint effort between BMW of North America, the Department of Energy, and the National Park Foundation electric vehicle drivers will have more places to charge the car while recharging themselves with nature and parks.”

More than 90 charging stations have been installed in and near national parks so far, including Death Valley National Park, Big Cypress National Preserve, and Cape Cod National Seashore.

“In making electric vehicle charging more widely available for everyone, this joint effort serves to make America’s national parks more accessible to drivers of electric and plug-in hybrid electric vehicles,” said Bernhard Kuhnt, Head of BMW Group Region Americas.

When identifying site locations, the team considered factors such as proximity and strength of EV markets, distance from nearby charging locations, and natural and cultural landscape considerations.

The Department of Energy’s Vehicle Technologies Office has provided technical assistance that supports innovative energy saving transportation projects at national park sites. These projects educate visitors on the benefits of advanced and alternative fuel vehicles and can help the National Park Service meet their energy, economic, and environmental goals. The benefits of these projects have the opportunity to reach far beyond the boundaries of the national parks.

BMW i3 electric vehicle plugged into a charging station at Thomas Edison National Historical Park in West Orange, NJ.
David Rose for BMW of North America

ABOUT BMW GROUP IN AMERICA
BMW of North America, LLC has been present in the United States since 1975. Rolls-Royce Motor Cars NA, LLC began distributing vehicles in 2003. The BMW Group in the United States has grown to include marketing, sales, and financial service organizations for the BMW brand of motor vehicles, including motorcycles, the MINI brand, and Rolls-Royce Motor Cars; Designworks, a strategic design consultancy based in California; technology offices in Silicon Valley and Chicago, and various other operations throughout the country. BMW Manufacturing Co., LLC in South Carolina is the BMW Group global center of competence for BMW X models and manufactures the X3, X4, X5, X6 and X7 Sports Activity Vehicles. The BMW Group sales organization is represented in the U.S. through networks of 347 BMW passenger car and BMW Sports Activity Vehicle centers, 148 BMW motorcycle retailers, 122 MINI passenger car dealers, and 37 Rolls-Royce Motor Car dealers. BMW (US) Holding Corp., the BMW Group’s sales headquarters for North America, is located in Woodcliff Lake, New Jersey.

ABOUT THE NATIONAL PARK FOUNDATION
The National Park Foundation is the official charity of America’s national parks and nonprofit partner to the National Park Service. Chartered by Congress in 1967, the National Park Foundation raises private funds to help protect more than 84 million acres of national parks through critical conservation and preservation efforts and connect all Americans with their incomparable natural landscapes, vibrant culture, and rich history. Find out more and become a part of the national park community at www.nationalparks.org.

ABOUT THE NATIONAL PARK SERVICE 
More than 20,000 National Park Service employees care for America’s 419 national parks and work with communities across the nation to help preserve local history and create close-to-home recreational opportunities. Learn more at www.nps.gov, and on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and YouTube.