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Consider Going Electric

You may have seen me (Mike) on the show "Hawai`i: The State of Clean Energy" recently on KGMB and KHNL. I was interviewed about my new car--A Nissan Leaf. My new car is 100% electric. That's right. No gas, no stressing over rising prices at the pump, no wasting time in line at Costco to get the cheapest gas, no oil changes, and virtually no sound.

Carol and I sat down and figured out how much money we would save if we stopped buying gas and bought the Leaf instead. Since I live in Kapolei and work at the State Capitol, I do quite a bit of driving. We hadn’t purchased a new car in nearly 40 years. Always bought used, and drove them till they fell apart. So, even with the gas savings variable, I had to strategize on how to make the final pitch to Carol. I finally came up with, “Look, honey, I’m the chair of the Senate Energy and Environment Committee, and it’s up to me to set a good example.” Oh yeah, I think I took her out to eat at her favorite restaurant. That helped too. In the end, we both realized that we would save about $4,000 a year by purchasing the Leaf. $4,000 that was leaving our pockets to pay for dirty, polluting gas made with foreign oil from countries that, for the large part, don’t like Americans that much.

Mike Gabbard with Leaf Electric Car.

So I got my Leaf on April 15th and have gotten the hang of plugging it into the charging station that I had installed in my garage. I've gotten used to being stopped in parking lots by strangers who want to talk about my car, see the engine, and see where I plug it in. I've gotten used to not creating any noise or air pollution while driving. I've gotten used to not even thinking about gas stations any more.

I encourage you to consider going electric for your next vehicle. I know it’s a big leap and takes a lot of getting used to. I want to share my experience with as many people as possible in the hopes of pushing you towards going electric. It may not be something you would do this year, or even next, but keep it in mind and take it from me--electric cars are great!