SAN FRANCISCO - ECOtality Inc., a leader in clean electric transportation and storage technologies, announced it has entered into an agreement with Houston to help the city plan for the deployment of electric vehicle charging infrastructure.

ECOtality will initiate the company's Micro-Climate Program for the Houston region, in collaboration with the Clinton Climate Initiative (CCI).
This program will bring together key regional stakeholders, establish deployment guidelines, provide long-range planning (10-plus years) as well as create a short-term blueprint and action plan for the Houston region to become EV ready.

"By implementing a smart, process-oriented and structured planning program, regions are better able to meet the needs of the new wave of EV drivers," explained ECOtality President and CEO Jonathan Read. "ECOtality's work with the city of Houston and the Clinton Climate Initiative continues our strong commitment to EV infrastructure planning."

In July 2010, the Houston area was added to ECOtality's EV Project. The city of Houston will assist in the introduction and expansion of electric vehicle use in the region.

"Houston has long been considered the energy capital of the world," said Mayor Annise Parker. "With ongoing research and development of wind, solar and geothermal energy, we are on the cusp of becoming the alternative energy capital of the world. Our growing partnerships will make it affordable and easy for Houstonians to embrace cleaner technologies."

Houston is one of 16 cities that have joined the C40 Electric Vehicle Network, a group of cities committed to making themselves more electric vehicle-friendly. The formation of the network was announced in December 2009 at the Climate Summit for Mayors, held alongside the UN Climate Change Conference (COP15) in Copenhagen. The member cities include Bogota, Buenos Aires, Chicago, Copenhagen, Delhi, Hong Kong, Houston, London, Los Angeles, Madrid, Mexico City, Portland, Sao Paulo, Seoul, Sydney and Toronto. As the delivery partner of the C40, CCI is helping these cities, including Houston, to develop electric vehicle strategies.

The Clinton Climate Initiative, a program of the nonprofit William J. Clinton Foundation, works with governments and businesses around the world to create and advance solutions addressing climate change.

As project manager for the EV Project, ECOtality North America will oversee the deployment of nearly 15,000 charging stations in 16 cities across six U.S. states, as well as the District of Columbia. The project, a private-public partnership with a total value of $230 million, is funded by the U.S. Department of Energy through a federal stimulus grant of $114.8 million. The goal of The EV Project is to create and test robust electric vehicle-charging environments.

Marc Sobelman of ECOtality North America has been named the regional manager for the Micro-Climate program in Houston.