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Coal sees opportunity in electric cars

Via the Bismarck Tribune:

By Jessica Holdman

With one of the Falkirk Mine draglines looming tall in the background, North American Coal Engineering Manager Steve Burke pulls onto the minesite dirt in his battery-powered Chevrolet Volt.

“Every day I charge up my electric vehicle powered by North Dakota’s homegrown energy source, lignite coal,” he says in the video ad played before the crowd at the Lignite Energy Council Fall Conference in Bismarck this week.

Through ad campaigns such as this, the North Dakota coal industry aims to change the local perception of electric vehicles to increase demand for the coal-fired energy it produces.

In January, Bohrer said a number of his Twitter followers indicated they would never consider buying an electric vehicle. And Bohrer said often, when he sees an electric vehicle on the road, his first thought is “that dang hippie.”

But of Burke he says: “I would let him merge in front of me on the interstate because he’s powering his vehicle with homegrown North Dakota lignite. That’s the message we need to do more of.”


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