The Renault-Nissan Alliance today announced that Nissan and Pima Association of Governments (PAG), which represents the Tucson region, are forming a partnership to advance zero-emission mobility by promoting the development of an electric vehicle (EV) charging network.


ECOtality Inc., a Scottsdale, Ariz., clean electric transportation and storage technologies company, also will participate in the partnership by working to facilitate the process of helping make the Tucson Metro Area EV-ready.


The Alliance has committed to being a global leader in zero-emission vehicles (ZEV). Nissan will introduce ZEVs in the United States in 2010 and will mass market ZEVs globally two years later.


“This partnership represents a major step toward making zero emissions a reality in the Tucson Metro Area,” said Dominique Thormann, senior vice president, administration and finance, Nissan North America.


“The Tucson area long has been a leader in advanced technology and sustainability planning. We are looking forward to working with our partners in fostering the development and acceptance of electric vehicles as a smart, environmentally sound choice.”


The partnership supports the PAG Clean Cities Program, whose efforts in developing a regional EV Micro-Climate Working Group will bring together regional stakeholders to streamline the establishment of charging infrastructure to support grid-connected vehicles in the Tucson area.


“As a region, we are leading the way in developing a rich charging infrastructure to support cleaner modes of transportation,” said PAG Regional Council Chair Lynne Skelton. “This joint agreement will foster new jobs and opportunities in the Tucson region as we become a pioneer launch market for these advanced vehicles.”


As part of the agreement, Nissan will assist PAG and its member jurisdictions in EV acquisition as well as work with PAG to develop plans to promote a charging infrastructure for EVs. The region has committed to promote and aid in the deployment, operation and maintenance of the charging network.


ECOtality will participate and support the efforts of Nissan, PAG, utilities and other agencies to coordinate the establishment of policies and help streamline the deployment of an EV infrastructure.


“Our strong knowledge of Arizona’s transportation systems and government operations, combined with our past experience of installing EV infrastructure throughout the Southwest, uniquely positions ECOtality to assist PAG and Nissan in facilitating this process,” said Jonathan Read, president and CEO, ECOtality.


“Through sensible policies, intelligent deployment of charge infrastructure, and strong public awareness, PAG, Nissan and ECOtality will help make the Tucson region an EV Micro-Climate that successfully fosters consumer adoption of clean electric transportation.”


The Renault-Nissan Alliance has begun ZEV initiatives in Israel, Denmark, Portugal, the Principality of Monaco, Kanagawa Prefecture and Yokohama city (Japan), French electric utility company EDF, private car hire service “greentomatocars” (UK) and with zero-emission transport system company “elektromotive” (UK).


In the United States, the Alliance also has agreed to ZEV partnerships in the State of Tennessee, the State of Oregon, and Sonoma County, Calif., to explore ways to promote zero-emission mobility and the development of an electric-vehicle infrastructure.