WASHINGTON - The Los Angeles Air Force Base in California will be the first federal facility to replace 100 percent of its general-purpose ground fleet with plug-in electric vehicles (PEVs), according to a news release written by Staff Sgt. Richard Williams with the Air Force Public Affairs Agency.

The article said initial planning for the installation of charging infrastructure is under way, and that the vehicles could be on the base as soon as January, 2012. The new EV initiative, called the100-percent Electric Vehicle Base initiative, will apply to all Air Force-owned and leased vehicles, which includes passenger sedans, two-ton trucks, and shuttle buses. The initiative would not include force protection, tactical and emergency response vehicles. Approximately 40 vehicles on the base are eligible for replacement with PEV models.

The electrification initiative is the first step in implementing an ongoing U.S. Department of Defense (DOD) effort to deploy PEVs on a large scale. The DOD’s broader program focuses on finding a way to establish cost parity between PEVs and comparable conventional vehicles in segments of the DOD’s fleet.

The DOD has a global fleet of 200,000 vehicles, and the article said the Air Force and DOD are “actively exploring the operation and financial feasibility for broad-scale implementation of vehicle-to-grid on their bases.”

The DOD has also partnered with the U.S. General Services Administration (GSA) to launch a study of the residual values, and useful lifespans, of PEVs relative to conventional vehicles. In addition, DOD officials are conducting site assessments to determine the infrastructure costs, and operational considerations, involved in installing EV charging stations.

"(Los Angeles) Air Force Base will serve as a model for future efforts to bring PEVs into the Air Force and DOD," said Dr. Camron Gorguinpour, the special assistant to the assistant secretary of the Air Force for installations, environment and logistics.

Gorguinpour said the DOD selected the base due to the nature of its fleet.

"They have a small, diverse general purpose vehicle fleet that will lessen operational risks and maximize value to the base energy management program," he said.

Source: Air Force Public Affairs Agency