Electric Vehicle Parking Ordinance Is a Lung Health Win for Chicago

In late April, the Chicago City Council, with support from Mayor Lightfoot, passed an ordinance which requires new residential buildings with five or chicago trafficmore units, and non-residential developments with 30 or more parking spaces to have 20 percent of parking spaces “electric vehicle ready.” Those spaces must have plugs to charge an electric vehicle (EV) – one that operates only on electricity – or wiring to add one in the future.

Respiratory Health Association supported this effort to require new buildings and developments in Chicago to provide charging options for EVs. People living in single family homes can easily plug-in an EV to charge overnight in a private garage. However, it is more difficult for those who rent or live in condos.

Over 20,000 electric vehicles are already operating in Illinois, primarily in the Chicago area. EVs operate without emitting harmful tailpipe pollution. They are also charged with electricity that is increasingly generated by clean wind and solar power. We expect the number of vehicle models to increase over the next several years as prices continue to fall.

Approximately 100,000 Americans die every year just from breathing dirty air, and that will continue until we stop the threat of air pollution. By making it easier for more people to drive electric, actions like this will help build a healthier future for everyone.