Solar-powered EV charger provides energy to Covid-19 emergency facilities


As pop-up Covid-19 facilities are being set up across North America, the need to provide off-grid power is becoming essential. Electric vehicle charging technology company Envision Solar, is offering support by re-deploying its solar-powered EV charging units to response facilities in Oakland, California.

Its EV Arc chargers, which are typically for EVs, are being delivered to sites to provide a zero-emission alternative to noisy and polluting diesel generators.

The chargers are also off-grid so can be readily relocated, unlike in-ground EV chargers. The emergency power panel and rapid redeployment capability uniquely equip EV ARCs to serve double duty as an emergency source of electricity in times of need.

“The City of Oakland utilizes sustainable/resilient equipment that may be deployed creatively to accomplish a variety of missions,” Oakland Public Works Assistant Director Richard Battersby said. “In this case, zero-emission solar-powered electric vehicle chargers are being used to provide electrical power to emergency response field sites. Yesterday this EV ARC was a solar-powered electric vehicle charger providing fuel to the City’s zero-emission vehicle fleet, and today it is providing zero-emission electrical power to a COVID-19 response site.”

The EV ARC is off-grid, solar-powered and transportable, which means it can be easily re-deployed to locations with an increased need for EV charging or emergency power. It can also be deployed into environments where power is needed but a connection to the utility grid is not available, such as surge facilities, pop-up testing centers and emergency shelters. Diesel generators have traditionally been the go-to source of power for these requirements, but the combination of exhaust and noise pollution make them less desirable than the silent and emissions-free electricity provided by the  EV ARC™ products, which are now being transported to facilities engaged in the city’s response to the coronavirus. Using electric vehicles powered by the sun at these facilities further reduces local airborne pollutants which could cause additional harm to those with respiratory health concerns. The power delivered by the City’s EV ARC™ units is free in contrast to the option of renting generators and buying liquid fuels. The City of Oakland took an early lead in preventing the spread of COVID-19 with a stay at home order placed on March 17, two days earlier than the statewide stay at home order was enacted.

“During times of peace and prosperity our products deliver the driving on sunshine experience day and night throughout the year. They cost nothing to run and they deliver service with precious little care or maintenance,” said Desmond Wheatley, CEO at Envision Solar. “That’s exactly what they are designed to do. But they are also designed to provide a highly reliable and clean source of fuel for transportation and other requirements in the event that the utility-grid cannot deliver. We could not forecast when the requirement would hit or what it would be, but we designed the products knowing that one day they might be the only reliable source of power our first responders and frontline workers could rely upon. Tragically, COVID-19 has delivered an opportunity for EV ARC to demonstrate its multiple layers of value. I am proud to support Oakland and our other customers at this time.”

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