Colorado Parks and Wildlife, Rivian partner to install Electric Vehicle Chargers in every state park
The Colorado Parks and Wildlife Commission voted unanimously to approve a partnership between Rivian and Colorado Parks and Wildlife that will increase electric vehicle charging infrastructure in Colorado state parks, Tuesday.
“The Colorado Department of Natural Resources appreciates the partnership to expand electric vehicle charging stations at our state parks throughout Colorado,” said Dan Gibbs, Executive Director, Colorado Department of Natural Resources. “Increasing the accessibility of electric vehicles and adding charging stations throughout Colorado is a high priority for Governor Polis. The partnership approved by Colorado Parks and Wildlife will provide even more opportunities for Coloradans to enjoy our incredible state parks and Colorado’s vast great outdoors while encouraging cleaner transportation options which will help advance our state’s climate change goals.”
While electric cars are growing in popularity across the country and specificially in Colorado, consumers are still concerned about finding a place to charge throughout the state. Knowing that, Colorado has made a commitment to expanding the use of electric vehicles with a goal of nearly 1 million electric vehicles on the road by 2030.
However, Colorado is falling behind on meeting our charging needs, as EV sales far outpace the installation of charging stations.
Hannah Collazo, the state director of Environment Colorado said,
“It shouldn’t be difficult for Coloradans to drive an EV to their favorite public lands. We need to make getting to our parks in an EV easier so outdoors-loving Coloradans do not forgo switching to EVs at all. We must electrify the way we travel to prevent pollution and a warming climate — and to protect the lands we cherish,” Hannah Collazo, the state director of Environment Colorado said.
In 2020, Environment Colorado, a statewide policy and advocacy group, asked if Colorado Parks and Wildlife was willing to install EV chargers in some of the state’s most iconic, remote locations as part of their Recharge Where You Recharge campaign.
Rivian, a manufacturer of electric vehicles, jumped at the opportunity to collaborate on extending charging infrastructure to areas where EV drivers wouldn’t otherwise have access, and is committed to install at least 2 state-of-the-art 11.5 kW Level 2 chargers in up to 50 CPW locations.
The passage of SB20-167 last year, which allowed manufacturers to sell electric vehicles directly to consumers, is yet another indicator of Colorado’s leadership in electric vehicle deployment.
“During the pandemic, we’ve seen significant growth in state park visitation, which demonstrates the importance of providing options to Coloradans and our visitors,” CPW Director Dan Prenzlow said. “While we encourage people to connect with Colorado’s outdoors, we all have an obligation to our lands, waters and wildlife to recreate responsibly and monitor how our increased outdoor activities impact the places we play. The installation of EV charging stations at state parks aligns with our agency’s goal to expand park facilities based on the evolving needs of park users and our ongoing efforts to balance outdoor recreation opportunities with mindful conservation.”
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UPDATE 5:27 p.m. — Interstate 70 through Glenwood Canyon has reopened in both directions Saturday evening after a safety closure due to a flash flood warning. There were no reported mud/debris slides.