SACRAMENTO, CA - The California Energy Commission recently approved three awards that total $114.3 million to help establish a state infrastructure for electric- and ethanol-powered vehicles, the Los Angeles Times reported.

Of the funds, $15.4 million comes from the state, $49.6 million is federal money and $49.3 million comes from private sources.

One of the projects is a partnership between Electric Transportation Engineering Corp. and Nissan Motor Co. The program will establish up to 1,000 residential charging stations and 1,300 commercial chargers, as well as 60 "Level 3 fast chargers," in San Diego County.

Program participants will pay out $32.6 million on top of the $8 million provided by the energy commission and $39.4 million from the U.S. Department of Energy.

Nissan will deploy 1,000 of its new LEAF electric vehicles in the market and study their performance, leading to the release of 242,000 Nissan electric vehicles by 2015.

The commission awarded a $3.4-million grant to a project by Coulomb Technologies of Campbell, Calif., to build 1,667 charging stations in the San Francisco, Sacramento and Los Angeles areas. This adds nearly $3.4 million more in federal stimulus funds. Coulomb and its partners will put up $508,000 for this project.

The third grant from the commission, worth $4 million, will go toward building 75 E85 fuel stations around the state. Partners include California's Department of General Services, Propel Fuels Inc., the East Bay Clean Cities Coalition, CALSTART and the Local Conservation Corps of California. They will provide $16.3 million in funding. The U.S. Department of Energy will contribute $6.9 million.