Miami Beach-based Car Charging Group, Inc an operator and provider of electric vehicle (EV) charging services, recently announced that it has raised $6 million in funding. The Offering consisted of convertible preferred securities with a conversion price of$0.70 and warrants exercisable at $1.00.
The Company also announced that it has undertaken specific restructuring actions to improve monthly cash flow, including initiatives that are expected to reduce general and administrative expenses by more than 40%. The funding will be used for strengthen CarCharging’s balance sheet and provide growth capital for expanding the Company’s network.
“This capital raise occurs as CarCharging prepares for further expansion in 2015,” said Michael D. Farkas, CEO of CarCharging. “As we pursue both top line growth and a path to profitability, we intend to maintain a strict focus on managing cash while investing in technology and business development initiatives to address the increasing need for quick, convenient, and cost-effective EV charging services.”
Farkas recently was recently interviewed by CCTV where he spoke about the future of electric cars, a growing trend in China. In the interview, he explained that electric cars are environmental friendly only if the source to power the electric cars are also green.
The NRG eVgo electric-car charging network has big plans for expansion, but it has already reached a significant milestone in the most electric-car friendly state in the U.S.
The network, operated by utility company NRG Energy, now has more than 120 DC fast-charging stations in California--and plans for more, both there and in other regions.
NRG says this is the largest fast-charging network in any state, which seems valid when measured by number of sites.
It includes stations offering both the CHAdeMO and Combined Charging Standard (CCS) protocols.
A majority is likely made up of CHAdeMO stations, which support the Nissan Leaf--the bestselling modern electric car--as well as the lower-volume Mitsubishi i-MiEV and Kia Soul EV.
The CCS is protocol is supported by most American and German manufacturers, but CCS-equipped cars only went on sale fairly recently.
Consequently, there hasn't been as much time to build up a large network, and there are far fewer cars on the road today that need it.
The eVgo California network includes 60 "Freedom Station" sites--which provide both CHAdeMO and CCS charging cables, as well as 240-volt Level 2 charging as wel.
In addition to those sites, 52 more Freedom Station sites are either under construction or in some stage of the permitting process, NRG says.
That's part of a larger plan to expand the eVgo network from 10 national markets to about 25 over the next two years.
The company already has charging sites in and around major cities including Atlanta, Chicago, and Washington, D.C.--as well as nearly 50 charging sites in Texas--and plans to expand from there.
It will open five charging sites in Tennessee this year, and expects to build sites that will allow electric-car drivers to travel between San Diego and Seattle, as well as virtually the entire East Coast, from Boston to Miami.
The California stations, however, were largely built as part of a $100 million settlement with the state's public utilities commission stemming from charges that a predecessor company fixed electric rates back in 2000.
Hundreds of thousands of California utility customers were overcharged for their electricity; when the deal was announcement, many commentators at the time noted that those customers received nothing directly from the settlement.
NRG opened its first evGo station in September 2013 at the Westlake Shopping Center in Daly City, south of San Francisco.
The 120 stations have been built over the past 16 months. The sites will operate free for a set period, after which electric-car drivers will have to pay for both fast charging and Level 2 charging.
Electric-car maker Tesla Motors is already pushing the limits. It's making cars with up to 270 miles of all-electric range. Will it soon be up to 400 miles after a retrofit package and new battery for the Tesla Roadster? A charging network for long-distance travel within Tesla driving range of 80% of the U.S. population built in just a few years? Nearly 150 miles worth of charge in just 20 minutes?
But this isn't the end of electric-vehicle progress. Tesla's chief technology officer, JB Straubel, recently outlined possibilities for much faster charging.
From slow to fast to wildly fast
At home, where Model S owners do most of their charging, it takes about nine hours to charge a Model S. Assuming owners plug in their Model S whenever they are at home, this is plenty fast enough to almost always achieve a desired charge rate before every trip. For owners who want a faster charge at home, a second onboard charger paired with a Tesla Wall Connector can provide a full charge in four hours and 30 minutes.
Of course, when Tesla owners are driving long distances, they won't want to wait for four-and-a-half hours. To address this issue, Tesla built a Supercharger network that can serve up a 50% charge in 20 minutes, and an 80% charge in 40 minutes.
While Tesla attempts to locate Superchargers near amenities like bathrooms, Wi-Fi hotspots, restaurants, and shopping centers to make waiting more convenient, it would be ideal to have charging on par with the time it takes to fill a gas tank -- even if owners only have to wait to charge when they are traveling long distances. But this is a pipe dream, right? Not according to Tesla.
"It's going to be hard. But I think we can get [charging] down to five to 10 minutes," Straubel said in an interview with MIT Technology Review. But it's going to take some time before Tesla can offer this charge rate, Straubel noted. He explained that delivering the Supercharger rate of 120 kilowatts of electricity seemed crazy just 10 years ago.
Tesla's Superchargers are already ahead of other charging infrastructure today. Most conventional public charging stations provide deliveries of less than 10 kilowatts. And even the fastest charging from competition still lags behind.
"Even SAE International's brand-new fast-charging standard, which was finalized in October and is being adopted by major automakers such as GM, tops out at 100 kilowatts," notes MIT author Kevin Bullis.
Tapping into solar panels and stationary energy storage
The level of charging Straubel is talking about will likely require solar panels and batteries for storing energy, enabling Tesla to deliver more than 120-kilowatt charging, he told MIT. Some places on electrical grids can't even serve 120-kilowatt charging. And it can be costly to draw such large amounts of power from utilities. Stationary storage and solar panels can help Tesla overcome these challenges.
Tesla has said that it plans to roll out solar panels and stationary storage to Superchargers. In fact, Tesla recently began construction on a solar roof at its Barstow, California, location.
Could these solar panels one day enable the five-to-10-minute charging Straubel predicts?
If there comes a day when EV owners not only wake up each morning with their desired charge, but find "filling up" on a long-distance trip is also just as convenient as it is for gas-powered cars, the value proposition for EVs may become difficult to pass up for many. Add in Tesla's lower-cost Model 3, aimed for a 2017 launch, and the case for EVs just keeps getting stronger.
Georgia Power is offering a boost to electric vehicle charging.
According to the Atlanta Business Chronicle , the utility will install public chargers at 50 locations around the state. It will also offer a $250 incentive to consumers who want to install charging stations at home.
Atlanta is the number two market in the U.S. for electric vehicle sales. That's thanks, in part, to a $5,000 state tax credit.
Lawmakers are considering phasing out that credit and adding a $200 annual fee for owners of electric cars to help pay for transportation upgrades.
Kansas City, Missouri, will become the latest municipality to gain an electric-car charging infrastructure this year.
A local utility company is leading the effort to build a comprehensive network of charging sites for drivers of plug-in vehicles.
Over the next several months, Kansas City Power & Light (KCP&L) will install more than 1,000 charging sites in the greater Kansas City area.
It's the largest such installation by an electric utility in the U.S. to date, it says.
Called the Clean Charge Network, it will offer free 240-volt Level 2 and DC fast charging to electric-car drivers for the first two years of operations.
The network will include 15 fast-charging stations provided by Nissan.
They are reportedly "combination" units that charge that can recharge an electric car using either the CHAdeMO standard (found largely in the Nissan Leaf) and the Combined Charge Standard (CCS) that is supported by all U.S. and German automakers.
The rest of the network will consist of Level 2 stations built and maintained by ChargePoint. All of the charging locations will be part of its national network of charging stations.
That means drivers will need a ChargePoint membership and card to access the stations, even though they won't have to pay to use them for the time being.
Sites will be placed "strategically throughout KCP&L's service region," the utility company said.
KCP&L has dabbled in electric-car charging before, installing 10 stations in 2011 and subsequently adding more as part of a demonstration project.
For this larger-scale undertaking, KCP&L hopes increased electric-car adoption will lead to more efficient use of the grid infrastructure.
It will encourage drivers to charge their cars during off-peak hours, making use of excess grid capacity.
With public charging stations more readily available, it also seems likely that the network will increase the number of drivers plugging in, instead of filling up.
Construction of charging sites began in late 2014 and is expected to be completed this summer.
The European Union is unlikely to reduce debt owed by Greece but could lower the interest rate, billionaire distressed asset investor Wilbur Ross told CNBC on Monday, after the anti-austerity party won Sunday's snap elections-raising concerns over the possibility of a Greek exit from the euro zone.
The chairman of WL Ross & Co. said on "Squawk Box" that he's encouraged by the speed at which the new Greek government is starting to take shape. He noted outgoing prime minister Antonis Samaras had also talked tough before he took office but became more cooperative once on the job.
Over the summer, Ross and other international investors invested $1.8 billion in Eurobank-becoming the bailed-out Greek bank's biggest shareholders in another sign of growing market confidence in Greece.
In one of his first major European investments after the 2008 financial crisis, he put money into the Bank of Ireland in 2011, which helped keep it out of state hands at the height of the euro zone debt fallout.
Ross also represents a group of investors that owns 17 percent of Bank of Cyprus of which he's vice chairman.
Installations have already begun on the West Coast, with the first location in San Diego County.
Installations have already begun on the West Coast, with the first location in San Diego County.
BMW and Volkswagen on Thursday announced they are teaming up to create nearly 100 electric vehicle charging stations along heavily traveled roads on the East and West Coasts.
The companies are working with ChargePoint, the largest electric vehicle charging network, on the effort. The publicly available stations will be added to ChargePoint's existing network of more than 20,000 charging spots in North America, and can be accessed by anyone with a ChargePoint or ChargeNow Card, or with the ChargePoint mobile app.
During the first phase of the project, the companies are aiming to build nearly 100 so-called direct current fast charging stations, which are expected to be available by the end of the year. They'll be located along Interstate 95 on the East Coast from Boston to Washington, D.C. and on the West Coast in Portland, San Francisco, Los Angeles, and San Diego, spaced no more than 50 miles apart. The companies are planning to build these stations at convenient locations such as rest stops, shopping centers, and restaurants.
Each station is expected to include up to two 50 kW direct current Fast chargers, or 24 kW direct current Combo Fast chargers compatible with BMW and Volkswagen electric vehicles, as well as many other models. When charging at a 50 kW station, the BMW i3 and the Volkswagen e-Golf can charge up to 80 percent in 20 minutes; at a 25 kW station it'll take 30 minutes. The locations will also include Level 2 chargers, which are compatible with all electric vehicles and offer up to 25 miles of range per hour of charging.
"A robust network of conveniently located [direct current] Fast charging stations will go a long way toward increasing electric vehicle adoption and making electric vehicle ownership even more enjoyable," Robert Healey, Head of EV Infrastructure at BMW of North America, said in a statement. "The express charging corridors are anoth
Despite their rising popularity, most electric cars aren’t considered road-trip material.
Their limited battery range means that long-distance travel must be carefully planned, with charging stations along the route mapped out in advance. Wing it, and risk running out of juice in the middle of nowhere. And most charging stations aren’t all that fast, meaning long trips contain lots of downtime.
Now BMW, Volkswagen and an electric vehicle charging company based in the Bay Area want to change that.
The two German automakers have teamed with ChargePoint of Campbell to install networks of high-speed chargers along two interstate corridors. One will link San Diego with Portland, Ore. The other will stretch from Washington, D.C. to Boston.
Both networks should be up and running by the end of the year. The three companies announced the project — which they will jointly fund — at the 2015 Washington Auto Show on Thursday.
The chargers will be quick — capable of restoring 80 percent of the charge in a BMW i3 or Volkswagen e-Golf in 30 minutes or less. They will be spaced no more than 50 miles apart, to ensure that drivers don’t get stranded on the roadside.
The companies are following a path already blazed by Tesla Motors, which is building a nationwide network of its own high-speed supercharger stations along heavily traveled interstate highways, with 353 stations opened so far. But Tesla’s proprietary superchargers only work with the company’s Model S sedan, whose owners use the superchargers for free. They simply aren’t compatible with other electrics. Hence the need for another network.
“All car companies and charging companies came to the same conclusion a long time ago, that this is a critical piece for the adoption of electric cars,” said Pasquale Romano, ChargePoint’s CEO.
ChargePoint already operates 20,000 charging stations across North America, but the system so far includes just 110 DC fast chargers. The new charging corridors will add another 100. ChargePoint and its partners declined Thursday to say how much the project will cost, other than calling it “a very significant investment.”
Particularly on the West Coast, the corridors will connect cities that have emerged as EV hotspots. California alone accounts for roughly 40 percent of all electric cars sold nationwide, with more than 100,000 already on the road.
The stations within each corridor will contain several types of chargers, since not all electric cars can use the same recharging equipment.
Each station will include as many as two fast chargers. Some of those will operate at 50 kW, and will be capable of restoring 80 percent of the battery charge for an i3 or an e-Golf in as little as 20 minutes. Others will operate at 24 kW, taking about 10 minutes longer to recharge to the same level. All stations will also feature level 2 chargers, which are substantially slower but can be used by all electric cars, according to ChargePoint.
For the automakers, access to speedy charging between cities is essential to convincing drivers that electric vehicles aren’t just commuter cars.
“They’re buying more than a car — they’re buying a lifestyle,” said Stuart Gardner, product manager with Volkswagen of America. “This DC fast-charging network is one of the pieces to that holistic approach. It’s a key building block.”
he EU’s TEN-T Programme will provide #$%$5 million to co-fund a study and a pilot deployment of 200 charging points for electric vehicles on the main French highways. The project will contribute to the development of charging infrastructure and enable a wider use of electric transport in Europe.
“France has many front-running innovative companies, such as Renault, but for mass market uptake, a wide coverage of charging stations is essential, as most electric vehicle owners wish to cover inner-city and long-distance travel,” Jakub Adamowicz, Spokesperson for the European Commission, told Cities Today. “Consequently, these 200 stations will enable citizens across France to take advantage of this new technology. France is on a good path, via tax incentives for example, but the goal of mass market viability for electric vehicles has not yet been reached.”
The TEN-T study, named CORRIDOR, has the support of a consortium of companies (Electricité de France, Renault, Nissan West-Europe, ParisTech, Volkswagen and BMW) who have decided to test their concept for mass-market introduction on the highways in France.
The project will work on a set of technological, environmental and end user requirements to enable an interoperable fast charging network and foster rapid electric vehicle deployment in France. In its pilot phase the initiative will deploy, test, operate and monitor 200 new interoperable and multi-standard fast charging stations.
“Projects like CORRIDOR need to be replicated across the EU to allow trans-European travel,” added Adamowicz. “Once a pilot is successful, a rollout of an entire corridor or even a whole network would be the natural next step. The linking up of EU pilot projects should be encouraged and therefore particular attention should be given to standardisation and roaming capabilities. There needs to be more direct incentives to the buyers of alternative fuel vehicles and countries need to invest in the installation of charging stations.”
The second phase of the project will be dedicated to drafting recommendations on interoperable connections with existing charging networks in France and neighbouring countries, to ensure that the same network can be replicated across Europe.
The third phase will cover the development and validation of innovative business models supporting the deployment of a fast charging infrastructure. It will involve processing data from the pilot and benchmarking it with other European systems.
MELBOURNE, Jan. 22 (Xinhua) -- Western Australia is hoping to win the race to build Australia's first electric car network with a plan to build a series of charging stations throughout the South West.
The Australian Broadcasting Corporation (ABC) reported late Wednesday that seven councils in the South West region have agreed to support the network funded by the Royal Automotive Club of Western Australia (RAC WA).
The lack of charging stations, let alone competent ones, has limited uptake of electric vehicles (EVs) in Australia.
The only fast charge station in the West is at a university campus in Perth and therefore EVs have been restricted to the city limits.
The new facilities would include 50-kilowatt stations at towns between Perth and Augusta that will charge the average EV in 30 minutes.
Stephen Moir of WA's Motor Trade Association said the RAC WA proposal was a game-changer
"For the first time in Australia, you're actually going to be able to take a trip into regional areas," he told the ABC.
"It overcomes one of the biggest obstacles to owning an electric vehicle, which is 'range anxiety'."
"I think it would be great if Western Australia could lead the nation and build the first electric highway."
It may be in competition with the eastern states with a network from Melbourne to Sydney via Canberra planned by electric vehicle manufacturer Telsa.
Will Golsby, RAC WA spokesperson, said while the RAC would purchase and install the stations, they would be owned and maintained by the councils.
"The RAC is really driving this concept, we want to bring it to life," Golsby told the ABC.
"Around 110 years ago, the RAC was formed by members who wanted to open up the state to motorists.
"We believe this is part of the future by opening up the roads to electric vehicles."
He noted that the Commission's views with regards to VAT policy priorities for Greek are set out in pages 30 and 31 of the European Union's fourth review of its financial assistance program for Greece. This report called on Greece to close the VAT gap, as historically the performance of the VAT system has been weak.
It said: "The overall VAT tax-efficiency ratio – the ratio between VAT tax revenue collected against what would be collected if all consumption was taxed at the standard VAT rate – is among the lowest in the EU. This reflects in part a multitude of VAT reduced rates and exemptions for certain product categories and regions. However, it also reflects widespread non-compliance with the current system (both under-declaration and under-collection). The VAT collection ratio is some 40 percent of total potential revenues, worth up to some EUR10bn (USD11.7bn) a year in non-collected revenues."
The problem of non-compliance has become especially acute during the crisis it says. "Tax efficiency has dropped visibly until 2012, likely reflecting the tight liquidity situation which has forced many companies and households to circumvent the taxation system."
Greece may introduce further reforms to its VAT regime this month, the report says, based on a review of the VAT reform options available by the Commission and Greek authorities in June 2014.
BELGRADE -- Hungary's Foreign Minister Peter Szijjarto said on Wednesday an alternative gas supply route for Serbia and Hungary could come from Greece through Macedonia.
his scenario is considered after the recent cancellation of the South Stream gas pipeline project.
"It is certain that South Stream was one of the most important projects and its financial cancellation is bad news for Serbia and Hungary," he said at the Serbian government headquarters after the signing of a plan to modernize the railway between Belgrade and Budapest.
South Stream was very important for energy security in Central Europe, he noted.
There is no other choice but to find a new solution, said Szijjarto, who is also the minister of trade.
An alternative gas supply route could go from Greece through Macedonia and Serbia to Hungary, he remarked.
The gas could be distributed throughout Central Europe from Hungary, but that is just one of many options that will be considered, the Hungarian official stated.
Energy security is an important matter for the entire Europe, and also an issue of responsibility, he stressed.
Szijjarto said he would meet with European officials early next week to discuss the possibility of the European Commission including a project meant for improving energy security in its investment package.
He pointed out he had discussed it with Serbia's Foreign Minister Ivica Dacic and that they would discuss it further during Dacic's upcoming visit to Hungary.
Szijjarto added that he would talk about an alternative gas supply route with Turkish officials in about 10 days.
Serbia's Deputy Prime Minister Zorana Mihajlovic said she agreed with the opinion that the energy stability of Central and Eastern Europe was key to the energy stability of all of Europe.
"We are prepared to consider any option that can help us achieve energy stability in the future," she remarked.
New Market Report: Greece Autos Report Q1 2015
Recently published research from Business Monitor International, "Greece Autos Report Q1 2015", is now available at Fast Market Research
[ClickPress, Sat Jan 10 2015] BMI attributes growth in vehicle sales over the year-to-date to low base effects and pent-up demand in the market following years of sustained declines. We expect these dynamics to continue into 2015, despite our relatively sanguine outlook on the Greek economy.
Passenger car sales in Greece increased 22.2% year-on-year in the first ten months of 2014, to 59,847 units. BMI attributes this growth over the year-to-date to low base effects and pent-up demand in the market following years of sustained declines.
The biggest hurdle facing electric cars in China is the lack of charging stations on public roads. The government is aware of the problem and is looking for creative solutions, like using street poles. Beijing has launched a pilot project to transform street lamps to serve as charging poles for electric cars.
Eighty-eight high-pressure sodium lamps on a road in Beijing’s Changping District have been converted into energy-saving LED lamps. Eight charging poles have been installed and put into trial operation using the energy saved from the new LED lamps, said the Beijing Municipal Science and Technology Commission.
The charging poles work day and night, alleviating charging demand for electric taxis and private cars in the area, said the commission.
Beijing will expand the project to other areas.
Beijing has built charging poles at new energy car dealers, parking lots, high-tech industry parks and expressway service areas.
The city plans to build 10,000 public charging poles for electric cars by 2017, the municipal government said in June of last year.
The charging poles will be installed in airports and train stations, public parking lots, malls and supermarket parking lots, highway rest areas, electric car dealers and gas stations.
The Chinese government has been encouraging consumers to buy electric vehicles as a solution to the country’s pollution problems. But the plan has been hindered by a bottleneck in the charging infrastructure.
A charging system for the Beijing-Shanghai expressway will soon open. Over the weekend, five electric cars started a 1,262-km test journey from east China’s business hub of Shanghai to Beijing, with charging stations available every 50 km in each direction.
China’s electric car production jumped fourfold to 83,900 vehicles in 2014, the Ministry of Industry and Information Technology said Friday.
In 2014, output of pure electric passenger cars rose 300 percent from a year earlier to 37,800, with plug-in hybrid passenger cars reaching 16,700 units.
Measures including tax exemptions, price subsidies and requirements for government organs to buy green cars are in place. However, new energy cars still account for only a tiny proportion of total output. In the first 11 months of 2014, China’s automotive industry produced 21.1 million vehicles.
General Motors (GM -0.1%) calls the new Bolt concept a "game-changing" model in the EV segment.
"Chevrolet believes electrification is a pillar of future transportation and needs to be affordable for a wider segment of customers," proclaims GM.
The automaker plans to offer the model in all 50 states and in many global markets. That statement could indicate GM plans to partner with an existing retail chain in an ambitious charging station build-out initiative.
A starting price of $30K for the Chevrolet Bolt is expected.
The details on performance, style, tech features, and crossover aesthetics are quite impressive - although it's relevant to note that GM use the word "concept" 22 times in its press release.
There's a vigorous debate on this 434-comment stream on the impact for Tesla Motors (TSLA -3.3%) and other EV manufacturers (TM, OTCPK:NSANY, OTCPK:BAMXY) from the Bolt development.
ATHENS, Jan. 7 (Xinhua) -- Greece raised 1.625 billion euros (1.922 billion U.S. dollars) in its first treasury bill auction of 2015 held on Wednesday, according to the country's Public Debt Management Agency (PDMA).
The 26-week bills were sold at an interest rate of 2.3 percent, up from 2.15 percent in the previous auction of same issue in December 2014.
Bids submitted totaled 1.625 billion euros, 1.58 times more than the asked sum.
The Public Debt Management Organization, in an announcement, said that the auction was made with the market's primary dealers and settlement date was set for Friday, 9 January.
The organization will also accept non-competitive bids worth 375 million euros by Thursday, 8 January.
Shut out of international markets since the start of the debt crisis in late 2009, Greece depends on multi-billion rescue loans from the European Union and International Monetary Fund to stay afloat and restore stability.
You want some battery juice with those fries, sir? McDonald's wants you glued to its restaurant seats chowing down on its fast-food wares for all eternity, and if your post-Big Mac weight wont do the job, it's hoping that the offer of wireless charging stations will.
McDonalds will be installing 600 Aircharge Qi chargers into 50 of its UK outlets, following a limited trial. Despite its benefits, wireless charging still isn't exactly a ubiquitous technology -- while the LG G3 and Nexus 6 support it, most devices are stuck with a cabled connection. Thankfully, Aircharge will also be kitting the restaurants out with its wireless charging receivers too, giving those tethered to a microUSB or Lightning cable a chance to recharge too.
California already leads the nation in policies advocating zero-emission vehicles.
It's home to more electric cars than any other state, and its environmental regulations are among the toughest.
But California's re-elected governor doesn't want to lose the momentum.
Sworn in Monday for his fourth and final term, Governor Jerry Brown set some ambitious goals for his state to strive for in the years ahead.
In his inaugural address (via The Sacramento Bee), Brown called for California to cut petroleum use in cars and truck by 50 percent by 2030.
It is one of three major environmental measures Brown wants the state to undertake over the next 15 years, along with producing one-third of electricity from renewable sources, and doubling the efficiency of existing buildings while making heating fuels cleaner.
The ambitious proposal is already winning praise from electric-car advocates.
Pasquale Romano--CEO of California-based charging-station network ChargePoint--released a statement Monday in response to Brown's speech.
He praised the governor's "continued commitment to the reduction of greenhouse gas emissions" and the expansion of the electric-vehicle industry in the state.
Brown has consistently supported legislation to increase the number of electric cars on California's roads.
This past September, he signed six bills intended to spur electric-car adoption during National Drive Electric Week--the second time he capped off a national electric-car advocacy event that way.
During Brown's fourth term, California will also become ground zero for the first wave of mass-market hydrogen fuel-cell cars.
Hyundai and Toyota are launching their vehicles in the state because it's the only one with any existing refueling infrastructure to speak of--and California has funding set aside for 100 public stations over the next few years.
There's still a lot of work to be done, but on the environmental front, it should prove to be a rich and interesting final term for the man once satirized by cartoonist Garry Trudeau as "Governor Moonbeam."