Rate Setting Process is Customer Driven and Community Focused
EWEB’s Board of Commissioners is considering rate changes to help maintain reliable utility services and fund critical investments in Eugene’s water and electric infrastructure.Find Out More
National Preparedness Month: Older adults take control in 1, 2, 3
We know older adults can face greater risks when it comes to the extreme weather events and emergencies we face, especially if they are living alone, are low-income, have a disability, depend on electricity for medical needs, or live in rural areas.Find Out More
Planning for a Future of Reliable, Affordable, Environmentally Responsible Energy
The challenges revealed by Eugene Water & Electric Board’s integrated resource planning process mirror those facing the Northwest.Find Out More
EWEB’s heat driven call to conserve energy yields major savings
EWEB is likely to implement similar, formalized “demand response” programs in the future.Find Out More
How does EWEB recover the costs of serving customers
Here’s an overview of the three primary ways EWEB recovers the costs of serving customers and generates the funds needed to keep the power on and the water flowing.Find Out More
Stay cool during extreme heat events
With temperatures forecasted to reach over 100 degrees over the next several days, we've prepared some tips and tricks to help you stay cool.Find Out More
Planning for a Reliable, Affordable, Green Energy Future
EWEB General Manager Frank Lawson publishes an op-ed in the Eugene Weekly about EWEB's IRP.Find Out More
Women in STEM: Meet the woman responsible for managing our wholesale energy agreements to ensure we meet our customers energy needs
Megan Capper, the Energy Resource Manager at EWEB, began her career working in economics at BPA before joining the power planning department EWEB, ensuring we can meet the energy needs of our our customers today, tomorrow and 20 years from now.Find Out More
Substations – The resilient spine of EWEB’s electric system
The substation redundancy ensures reliable power continues to flow to homes and businesses despite unexpected equipment failures and routine maintenance.Find Out More
EWEB charts energy supply choices for next 2-3 years
After 18 months of study to assess Eugene’s future electricity needs, EWEB has identified next steps to pursue in the next two to three years.Find Out More
Trends that are impacting your utility rates
Needed infrastructure investments and rising costs of operations will require increases in the price of water and electric services.Find Out More
Wildfire season is here – tips and safety precautions
Temperatures are heating up with weather forecasts anticipating temperatures up to 99 degrees in Eugene and the surrounding areas on the 4th of July.Find Out More
June 2021 Heat Dome broke records for temperature – but not energy use, EWEB analysis finds
The extreme temperatures from two years ago show the need for EWEB to choose energy sources based on best fit.Find Out More
Hydrogen’s decarbonization potential discussed at EWEB Board meeting
The simplest, lightest, most abundant element in the universe – hydrogen – could play a key role in decarbonizing society, EWEB's Board learned at recent meeting.Find Out More
EWEB could need additional low-carbon, on-demand electricity, new analysis shows
Quickly rising electricity demand could require EWEB to acquire zero-carbon firm resources such as biomass or nuclear plants.Find Out More
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My EV Story: Charlie's BMW i3
April 23, 2020
Intrigued by the possibility of saving money on vehicle fuel and maintenance with an electric vehicle (EV), our family leased a Chevrolet Spark EV in 2016. This car has an 80-mile range, which was fairly typical for an EV in 2016, and we intended it as the in-town commuter vehicle while we continued using a gas-powered companion for long-distance travel.
"Sparky" exceeded our expectations.
As a long-time purchaser of inexpensive vehicles with 4-cylinder engines, I was surprised to find, for the first time, that I owned a car that was fun to drive. I don't generally drive for fun, but the "zippiness" of the Spark EV, thanks to the innate characteristics of EV engines and drive trains, provided an unexpected amount of satisfaction.
When the lease ended, we reluctantly surrendered Sparky and initially considered upgrading to the vehicle that replaced it in Chevrolet's electric line-up, the Bolt. After our successful experiment with the electric Spark, we were ready to invest in an EV that could be used for everything: long-distance trips as well as the in-town commute.
The Bolt seemed to be a fine car, but we just weren't as comfortable in the seats as we had been in the Spark, and I was still somewhat nervous about recharging when traveling.
We settled on the BMW i3 with a range extender. The "range extender" is a very small gas engine that provides an extra 50-70 miles of travel if you need it. The rated all-electric range of the i3 is 153 miles, which is less than many 2019 EVs, but I liked the security of knowing I could always keep going with a stop at a traditional gas pump.
After our first 2,500 miles of use, we have put 1.8 gallons of gas in the tank and even that was mostly avoidable. The range extender primarily functions as a security blanket.
Leasing vs. buying
For both cars, we chose to lease for three years rather than making an outright purchase. While there are many factors in that decision, part of our thinking is that we want to take advantage of the rapidly increasing range of newer vehicles. Because of advantageous leasing terms, the i3 was actually less expensive to lease than several EVs that have lower sticker prices.
The new commuter vehicle
A bit before acquiring the BMW i3, the family also became a one-car household. Like many families, we always kept two cars, one for each adult. But in 2019 we acquired our first electric bicycle, a Magnum Cruiser. It turned out that with an electric bike for commuting we no longer needed two cars.
While an EV saves money on fuel and maintenance, those savings pale in comparison to the financial benefit of substituting the acquisition cost of an electric bike for that of a car. And no car insurance!