Climate Corner: How my life changed driving a used EV

Apr 6, 2024

Jonathan Brier

In October 2023 I wrote “Electrify The MOV it just makes cents” and said I would buy an EV. Little did I know I would find a used EV with 20k miles on it under $25k just after Thanksgiving (and under $20k after federal incentives for a used EV). My wife and I did calculations and we wondered why manufacturers are focusing on large high priced EVs so many cannot afford. Given how the tech is evolving and my planned mileage we bought used and kept our eyes open for cars.

An EV makes a lot of sense financially with a predictable commute of ~100 miles from Marietta, Ohio to Athens, Ohio and back a few days a week. That is well within the lower cost EV range and I can charge no problem with a 240 volt charger overnight.

Between my wife and I we’ve driven the EV ~8k miles since December. We road tripped to New Hampshire (around New Years, in the cold) ~1,500 miles, we visited Cincinnati, Ohio (in January with a headwind) ~420 miles, and Detroit, Michigan (in March) ~700 miles. Yes, the cold does reduce the range, but it’s not that much. Just like getting to know any vehicle you learn when and how to stop to add more range. The range anxiety was gone after our second road trip because we knew how to find charging and the time it adds. We have a slower charge rate compared to newer and high end cars for home and DC fast charging, but it is kind of nice to be forced to stop and stretch and see the local areas. We’re not stuck for hours, sometimes just 5 minutes up to 45, or we charge at the hotel when we stay overnight. Optimized charging times with planners like ABRP (A Better Route Planner) and Plugshare make it easy to get from A to B and back.

Some things that changed:

  1. I haven’t been to a gas station for gas since I sold my old car, I have stopped to charge.
  2. My savings on gas looks like it will cover my insurance and registration meaning I have more money in my pocket. I only pay ~$25 in electric a month energy instead of $100+ for gas.
  3. Driving has become relaxing on long commutes since I don’t have the constant engine noise or vibration.

4 .I started noticing more about how little thought goes into the experiences around many charging locations making them less attractive in the long run. ie can you walk to a bathroom, find food, shop, or walk around.

  1. I think more about the electrical grid and how our community aggregation selection works. Lowest cost doesn’t mean lowest impact on health and environment.
  2. I smile when I pass the gas stations.
  3. I long for solar and wind farms in my local area…OK, I was like that before, but local renewable electricity means you get local taxes from what fuels your car, supporting the local economy and cleaner environment.

There is so much misinformation and disinformation floating about, and I’ll say the same thing I say to students. Understand who is behind the information, don’t just accept something at face value, check multiple sources, understand the bias of the source.

While Earth Day may be the first thing that comes to your mind in April, it also is known as Drive Electric Earth Month. There are numerous events where essentially EV owners answer questions, share stories, show their cars, and some will give rides. Each event lists the models that said they will be there. Visit to locate an event near you.

Nearest to Parkersburg/Marietta, at the time of writing the events are:

* Wednesday April 10 10:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. at Marshall University

* Tuesday April 23 2-4 p.m. at Ohio University

If you are really curious about driving an EV, fill out the interest form for Rural Reimagined ( and have an EV on loan for free for 2-6 weeks. This is open to many Appalachian counties in KY, OH, TN, VA, and WV.

I recommend taking an EV for a test drive. You might get hooked and that is a win for our Earth.


Jonathan Brier is a Marietta, Ohio resident, Information Scientist, Data Librarian, and an Eagle Scout. He is a member of the Association of Computing Machinery, American Association for the Advancement of Science, OpenStreetMap US, Mid-Ohio Valley Climate Action, and a Wikipedia contributor. If you would like to reach him, visit or email: