skip to main content

→ Top Stories:
Safe Chemicals
Defending the Clean Air Act

Max Baumhefner, Attorney, Clean Vehicles & Fuels, San Francisco

Max Baumhefner
I am an attorney, outdoor enthusiast, and a bread baker. My focus is the juncture of the electricity and transportation sectors. I work on policies designed to integrate electric vehicles into the grid and maximize their environmental benefits. I'm an environmentalist because my parents taught me to be responsible and clean up after myself, and I always do what my parents tell me.

Recent Posts

Electric Cars at the LA Auto Show Showcase the Future

Posted November 19, 2014 by Max Baumhefner

, , , , , ,

Every year, along with reporters and editors from Car & Driver, Motortrend and other specialty car geeks, I go to the Los Angeles Auto Show and ogle the future of cars. It’s a beauty contest of machines with bright showroom...continued

Million Electric Vehicle Bill Signed by Governor Brown

Posted September 21, 2014 by Max Baumhefner

, , , , , , , , ,

Governor Brown just signed the Charge Ahead California Initiative to put 1 million electric vehicles on the roads within 10 years and provide consumers with much needed relief at the pump. If you like the idea of driving on a cleaner fuel...continued

Charge Ahead California Initiative Passes Overwhelmingly

Posted August 25, 2014 by Max Baumhefner

, , , , , , ,

A child’s drawing posted on the door of Assembly Member Christina Garcia of Southeast Los Angeles, outlines a vision of placing 1 million electric cars, trucks, and buses on California’s streets within 10 years – a vision that  moved...continued

California Moves Closer Toward Clean Air for All

Posted May 27, 2014 by Max Baumhefner

, , , , , , , , , , ,

Imagine a California with substantially cleaner air and lower rates of asthma and cancer, especially in disadvantaged communities hardest hit by dangerous air pollution. Then imagine you’d be paying less in fuel costs – the equivalent of about $1 a...continued

Charge Ahead Initiative Passes Another Key Vote

Posted April 30, 2014 by Max Baumhefner

, , , , , , , , , ,

California Senate Bill 1275, authored by Kevin de León, just cleared the Senate's Environmental Quality committee with bipartisan support, and is one step closer to becoming law. This legislation would establish the Charge Ahead California Initiative, which aims to deploy...continued

My Birthday at Mt. Hood with Electric Car Charging

Posted February 28, 2014 by Max Baumhefner

, , , , , , , , , ,

Below are remarks I delivered today at an event at the Mt. Hood Ski Bowl, the first ski resort in the country to host a DC fast charger for drivers to get back and forth to the mountain on electricity:...continued

Ford Takes Solar Car Charging to the Roof

Posted January 2, 2014 by Max Baumhefner

, , , , , , , , ,

I’ve previously written on the overlapping consumer interest in clean vehicles and clean energy, describing five pathways to make the connection between the two.  Today, Ford unveiled a sixth, covering the roof of a plug-in hybrid C-Max Energi entirely in...continued

Charging Ahead Towards Dollar-a-Gallon Clean Fuel

Posted November 14, 2013 by Max Baumhefner

, , , , , , , , , ,

Today, NRDC joins a diverse coalition of community, health, and environmental groups to launch the Charge Ahead California campaign to deploy one million electric cars, trucks, and buses in the state within ten years.  The campaign includes the American Lung...continued

California Helps Drivers Plug-in and Replace Clunkers with Cleaner Cars

Posted September 18, 2013 by Max Baumhefner

, , , , , , , , , , , ,

To transform the vehicle fleet, you need to work on both ends — accelerating the purchase of cleaner new vehicles and the retirement of old clunkers. The California legislature is sending a package of bills to Governor Brown’s desk that...continued

Electric Cars Are Cleaner Today and Will Only Get Cleaner Tomorrow

Posted August 5, 2013 by Max Baumhefner

, , , , , , , , ,

Comments (8)

By Max Baumhefner and Cecilia Springer* Uncovering a fraud is uniquely satisfying, which is perhaps why news outlets continue to provide electric car deniers with a platform to proclaim they aren’t as green as they appear. But close examination reveals...continued

Wall Street Journal Op-Ed Needs a Better Accountant

Posted March 12, 2013 by Max Baumhefner

, , , , , , , , ,

Comments (12)

A Wall Street Journal Op-Ed by Bjorn Lomborg, “Green Cars Have a Dirty Little Secret,” argues that even though driving on electricity emits half as much pollution as driving on gasoline, it never makes up for the additional energy it...continued

Good and Green Reasons to Consider an Electric Car This Year

Posted March 5, 2013 by Max Baumhefner

, , , , , , , , ,

Comments (15)

By Felix Kramer* and Max Baumhefner When it comes to consumer products, environmentalists generally don’t encourage people to buy new and buy now. But that’s what we're about to do because electric cars are significantly cleaner than gasoline vehicles, and...continued

Tesla/NY Times Factual Dispute Reveals Different Truth

Posted February 16, 2013 by Max Baumhefner

, , , , , , , ,

Comments (4)

Over the past few days, a debate has unfolded between the start-up electric vehicle company, Telsa, and the New York Times on the subject of a test drive that ended with the car running out of juice. Telsa has released...continued

Big Brown and Governor Brown Deliver on Zero Emission Vehicles

Posted February 5, 2013 by Max Baumhefner

, , , , , , ,

Comments (6)

Governor Jerry Brown today released a “Zero Emission Vehicle Action Plan,” representing the nation’s most comprehensive effort by a state to accelerate the deployment of plug-in electric vehicles. Along with his announcement came the news that UPS took delivery of 100...continued

Why Can't Your Loan Be as Green and Efficient as Your Vehicle?

Posted January 31, 2013 by Max Baumhefner

, , , , , , , , ,

If you buy a car that costs over a $1,000 less a year to fuel than most other vehicles, shouldn’t you get better financing terms for potentially having more money to put toward paying off that vehicle? Unfortunately, only one...continued


Switchboard is the staff blog of the Natural Resources Defense Council, the nation’s most effective environmental group. For more about our work, including in-depth policy documents, action alerts and ways you can contribute, visit

Feeds: Max Baumhefner’s blog

Feeds: Stay Plugged In