U.S. Senator Bob Menendez (D-NJ) and Hoboken Mayor Ravi Bhalla announced $250,000 in federal funding to expand the number of electric car charging stations at a press conference this morning.
By Daniel Ulloa/Hudson County View
“Climate change is literally an existential threat to the city of Hoboken,” Bhalla said at the podium today.
He noted the city wants to be carbon neutral by 2050 to address climate change, with park of the goal making it easier to own an electric car in Hoboken.
“As a coastal city, Hoboken is on the front lines of the climate crisis which has caused our residents and businesses to have flooding costs by more frequent storms and rising sea levels,” he added.
Hoboken currently has five stations already for a total of 10 ports that could be used. Bhalla explained their goal is to create six more electric car charging stations for a total of 22 ports across the city.
“We can’t ignore the emissions from our transportation sector. In fact, transportation is the largest single contributor to greenhouse gas emissions in the United States. Transitioning to electric vehicles along with improving access to public transportation will be essential,” Menendez said.
He noted it will take less than half an hour to get a car charge up from 20 percent to 80 percent.
“By the time you stretch your legs, use the restroom, and grab a snack you’re ready to get back on the road,” the mayor continued.
Menendez noted he worked with U.S. Senator Cory Booker and U.S. Rep. Albio Sires (D-8) on securing $232 million in federal funding for community projects across New Jersey.
The projects make investments in health care, education, housing, green energy, and water infrastructure.
“I have been here when Hoboken was flooded. I was here during Superstorm Sandy and I was here during Ida,” he said.
Menendez noted he also secured a two-year extension of Rebuild by Design flood resiliency project.
“This revolutionary $230 million resiliency project will help alleviate flooding in Hoboken by using a mix of green space and innovative structural engineering. For every dollar invested in mitigation, the federal government saves six dollars in disaster relief spending,” the senator said.
He also took some shots at Russian President Vladimir Putin before concluding his remarks for the day.
“I know New Jerseyans are struggling to pay exorbitant prices at the pump,” Menendez said.
“Putin’s unprovoked and illegal war in Ukraine to Big Oil profiting off the backs of hardworking Americans” have caused gas prices to rise dramatically.
Menendez also acknowledged that everyone cannot own an electric car, which is why their calling on their allies to release additional fuel reserves, as well as for Big Oil raking in record profits while average folks struggle.
“Even as the price of oil has gone down, gas prices have not gone down. That’s why we’re called on the Federal Trade Commission to pursue to gougers. It’s just not right,” he continued.
“I fought a long time to reign in Big Oil, previously introducing legislation to end subsidies for billions of dollars these corps receive reverie years and we’re not going to stop fighting.
The first five public electric vehicle charging stations in Hoboken were installed last year. Since the first EV charging station became operational in July 2021, the program has been used more than 2,300 times.
This translates to a reduction in eliminating over 3,100 gallons of gasoline consumed, which would be the equivalent of planting 706 trees that grow for 10 years, officials said.