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Better Place Announcement Thursday in San Francisco

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San Francisco Mayor Gavin Newsom is holding a press conference Thursday afternoon where he will discuss “the latest news” from electric vehicle infrastructure startup Better Place. Does this mean San Francisco, or even California, is going to make a deal with Shai Agassi’s company, which has managed to sign on Israel, Denmark and Australia? We’re not sure, but Better Place has been making a major effort in the U.S. lately, and states like Michigan have been showing interest.

Agassi has said that to build out the infrastructure throughout California it would cost $1.5 billion, or about two weeks of oil imports. That would include car-charging spots in the Bay Area, Los Angeles, San Diego and Sacramento, and battery swap stations every 25 miles that would connect these hubs. For 100 miles, the system would need four switch stations, which would cost $2 million; for 400 miles, the network would need 16 stations, which would cost $8 million.

Because the press conference is Mayor’s Newsom’s, we’re guessing if it is about a deal with Better Place, it’s not yet a statewide effort. But regardless, we’re eager to hear what the city and the Better Place folks have to say — we’ll bring you the full report.

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