San Diego Gas & Electric (SDG&E) announced a new giving initiative today to provide instant rebates to K-12 teachers and first responders (police, fire, Sheriff’s deputies, lifeguards and emergency medical technicians) for the purchase or lease of a new electric vehicle (EV). Under the Champions for Clean Air: SDG&E EV Rebate Program, those professionals who live and work in communities served by SDG&E in San Diego and southern Orange counties are eligible for $1,000 discounts.
SDG&E plans to invest $500,000 of its own shareholder money—not customer funds—to provide the discounts over three years. This year, we plan to make 300 discounts available to eligible applicants on a first come, first served basis. These incentives are on top of state and federal incentives, which can total another $10,000. In addition, some automakers—Nissan and BMW—are currently offering $10,000 discounts off their 2017 EV models for a limited time to SDG&E customers, so it is possible for a teacher or first responder to purchase an EV for approximately $9,000 to $11,500, depending on the amount in state rebates they are eligible for. More information is available at sdge.com/evrebate.
“Teachers and first responders are the bedrock of our community. They give so much to our community,” said Caroline Winn, SDG&E’s chief operating officer. “We know a lot of them enter public service driven by a desire to make the world a better place, and many are motivated to reduce their carbon footprint. The EV rebate program is one way we can show our appreciation and help them make the switch to driving electric.”
San Diego County Board of Education President Rick Shea said, "Adopting
clean transportation is one of the ways teachers can make a difference for our
children and planet, so speaking as a former teacher and president of the
County Board of Education, I am very appreciative of SDG&E’s instant rebate
program to put EVs within the reach of our teachers."
Transportation is the single largest source of harmful emissions in the San Diego region, accounting for about half of the regional greenhouse gas emissions. EVs help clean the air by reducing air pollution associated with transportation. Teachers and first responders who switch to driving electric would be joining the ranks of more than 25,000 EV drivers already in the region. They will not just reap environmental savings, they will also reap financial savings, as maintenance and charging costs for EVs are lower than costs associated with operating gasoline vehicles.
SDG&E is teaming up with the nonprofit Plug in America, which will administer the program via an online web portal. There is a streamlined process for applicants to submit verification documents, such as teacher credentials and pay stubs online, to qualify for the discount.
The EV rebate program builds upon SDG&E’s extensive partnerships with public safety agencies and schools, as well as its track record of philanthropy. In 2016, SDG&E awarded $8 million in charitable contributions to nearly 600 non-profit organizations in San Diego and southern Orange counties.
Outside of its philanthropy program, SDG&E also works closely with local school districts and municipalities to install EV charging stations as part of its Power Your Drive program.
The EV incentive program announcement comes just three days before Electric Vehicle Day, which will provide the opportunity to test drive the largest variety of EVs in a single place. EV Day will take place on Saturday, Sept. 9, during National Drive Electric Week at Qualcomm Stadium, 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Learn more at sdge.com/EVDay.
SDG&E is an innovative San Diego-based energy company that provides safe, reliable, clean energy to better the lives of the people it serves in San Diego and southern Orange counties. SDG&E is a subsidiary of Sempra Energy (NYSE: SRE), a Fortune 500 energy services holding company based in San Diego.