The Cherokee Nation in Oklahoma, US has deployed two electric transit buses to transport employees and tribal citizens to work and tribal health centres, and its first electric school bus for Sequoyah High School in Tahlequah. All three electric buses replaced diesel-powered buses thereby reducing harmful tailpipe pollutants in the community.
The initiative has been supported by Francis Energy, a developer of direct current fast chargers (DCFC) for electric vehicles with a focus on rural communities. Tulsa-based Francis Energy is bringing electric vehicle fast charging to the Cherokee Nation for its first-ever all-electric buses. Francis’s chargers are available in various locations throughout the Cherokee Nation, including Tahlequah and Stillwell.
David Jankowsky, founder and president of Francis Energy, said, “The Cherokee Nation is a leader in environmental stewardship and natural resource protection. We were pleased to continue our partnership with them by bringing our DCFC solution to power these new electric buses. Francis’s mission is to eliminate range anxiety and to ensure that no community is left behind or without charging access as we shift to increased use of electric vehicles, and we’re glad to see the Cherokee Nation continue to be a leader in this transition.”
Cherokee Nation Principal Chief Chuck Hoskin Jr. said, “The Cherokee Nation has always been a leader in forward-thinking efforts that will reduce harmful activities impacting our natural resources. Our responsibility as stewards of the land, air and water will always be one of our most significant values. Working with Francis Energy and introducing eco-friendly transit options to our fleet is the perfect example of how we can make a great difference in our environment.”
Francis Energy developed the first comprehensive statewide network of DCFC in Oklahoma, and it remains the only state in the US to have DCFC access every 50 miles. The new chargers for the Cherokee Nation come on top of the more than 500 other EV charging stations Francis Energy has built across Oklahoma over the last two years.
David has been quoted by the Tulsa World as saying: ‘Not only does the state offer cheap land, inexpensive utilities and a strong workforce, it’s got the EV infrastructure necessary for Oklahomans to drive the cars once they roll off the assembly line’.
Francis Energy is currently working to develop fast charging networks in 14 additional states in the US.