Electrify Heartland Proudly Supports MINDDRIVE’s Mission to Electrify Education

Electric Vehicle Planning Project Applauds Efforts to Develop Skilled Workforce

To Create Next Generation Electric Vehicles and Related Technologies


KANSAS CITY, Mo., June 6, 2012 — Electrify Heartland, an electric vehicle planning project managed by Metropolitan Energy Center (MEC), today announced its proud support for Kansas City’s MINDDRIVE students as they embark on their cross-country trip in an electric car they created with the assistance of their adult mentors.

As a partner in the U.S. Department of Energy Clean Cities initiative, MEC and Electrify Heartland have been instrumental in connecting the MINDDRIVE team with Clean Cities representatives along their route, which will follow Interstates 8 and 10 from San Diego to Jacksonville. Clean Cities coalitions advance the nation’s economic, environmental, and energy security by supporting local actions to reduce petroleum use in transportation across the country.

“Electrify Heartland is proud to support the young people of the MINDDRIVE program, whose interest in electric vehicle technology will help create a highly skilled workforce for local business and industry,” said Ruth Redenbaugh, Electrify Heartland project manager. “This generation has never known a time when motorists did not have a choice between conventional internal combustion engines and hybrid or plug-in electric motors, and we look forward to them leading the way in adopting these cleaner, energy efficient vehicles and training for highly paid green jobs.”

Redenbaugh notes Greater Kansas City is one of the nation’s leading centers for the development of electric vehicles and related technologies, and is the home of Smith Electric Vehicles, Dow Kokam, Exergonix, Milbank Manufacturing, LilyPad EV, Mark One Electric and Heartland Electric, as well as one of the nation’s first Electric Vehicle Infrastructure Training Programs (EVITP) at the Electrical Joint Apprenticeship and Training Center operated by IBEW Local 124 and the National Electrical Contractors Association (NECA).

Electrify Heartland will create a replicable plan for electric vehicle and charging infrastructure preparedness in Greater Kansas City; Wichita, Salina, Topeka and Lawrence, Kan.; and Jefferson City, Mo.

Electrify Heartland is funded by U.S. Department of Energy Award EE-0005551, “Kansas – Missouri Community Readiness for EV and EVSE” and is a product of the Greater Kansas City Plug-In Readiness Initiative.

Electrify Heartland is led by a Steering Committee comprised of members from MEC, Black & Veatch, Polsinelli Shughart PC, IBEW Local 124, the Kansas City Joint Apprenticeship and Training Center, Kansas City Kansas Community College, Johnson County Community College and the University of Missouri-Kansas City.

MEC is a Missouri not-for-profit organization. Founded in 1980, its mission is to help create resource efficiency, environmental health and economic vitality in the Kansas City Metro. MEC is a catalyst for community partnerships focused on energy conservation. It works through a variety of educational and training programs, including Kansas City Regional Clean Cities Coalition, Home Performance, Project Living Proof and EnergyWorks KC. Every energy dollar conserved through MEC’s work remains available for investment in the local economy.

MEC was awarded more than $17 million in federal grants in recent years and is a partner in other multi-million-dollar projects in Kansas and Missouri. MEC has been the recipient of many awards recognizing its contribution to energy conservation and was host of the national Affordable Comfort Conference in 2003 and 2009. For more information, please visit www.kcenergy.org.

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