08/02/2008 05:12 am ET Updated May 25, 2011

Electric Cars: Where Will The Infrastructure Come From?

This week's announcement by General Motors that it has joined with more than 30 utility companies across the U.S. to work on issues related to electric vehicles got a great deal of media play. But the coverage only began to scratch the surface of the complexity of bringing plug-in electric vehicles to market in mass quantities.

In reality, the GM-utility conversation isn't entirely new. It began in January, at a Vehicle Electrification Workshop held at GM's research center in Warren, Michigan. I had the privilege of attending the meeting, which was facilitated by my colleagues at the sustainability strategy firm GreenOrder. The meeting included more than two dozen utility executives, including a team from the Electric Power Research Institute, the industry-funded consortium that served as the co-convener of the meeting.

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