The Caribbean islands are getting some new cars
It’s Thursday, July 26, and the Caribbean islands are getting some new cars.
There’s new demand for electric vehicles! But spoiler alert: It’s not coming from Tesla-obsessed San Francisco or even from Seattle, the green and rainy home of Grist HQ. Several companies are jumping on the chance to bring EVs to the small, hurricane-battered islands of Barbados, the Bahamas, Turks and Caicos, and more.
The reason? EVs are great for islands. In the Caribbean, trips are short: Barbados, for example, is only 21 miles long. Plus, importing gasoline to an island is expensive, which makes vehicles that can be plugged into the grid more cost-effective. And with many islands installing solar microgrids to cut energy costs and build hurricane resilience, electricity will only get cheaper — and more renewable.
EVs could even help the islands ride out future hurricanes. Researchers are developing technology that could allow citizens to power homes and community centers with their car batteries when disaster strikes.
There’s work to do to get this up and running. Many islands are still working to install charging networks, and pricey EVs are not exactly affordable for these heavily indebted countries. But since islands like Barbados get more than 200 sunny days every year, the electric vehicle/solar energy combo is looking pretty good.
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Mo’ money mo’ problems
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