It started with legacy OEMs trying to build and sell electric automobiles over the last 100 plus years. It took Tesla to actually grab the attention of the public and now with Rivian, GM, Ford, Kia, Hyundia, VW and so many others, we now see almost every day EVs driving all around the world.
There is no doubt the future will be electric, yet the state of electric fast charging is for some a hinderance to buying an EV as vehicle purchases are one of the largest decisions households make other than buying a home.
The federal government has started to release funds for installation of a nationwide network of Fast charging stations. We currently have Tesla's Supercharger network and Electrify America charging stations with more opening up monthly across the U.S. Both networks cover major national highways and state routes, yet the current state of access leaves the country in a nation of disconnected charging access in regard to road-trips.
Let's start with first understanding the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law, enacted in November 2021 which approved $7.5 Billion dedicated to EV Charging. This is split into two funding pools:
- $5 Billion for National Electric Vehicle Infrastructure (NEVI) program
- $2.5 Billion for a discretionary grant program to tackle rural charging and underserved and/or disadvantaged communities
$5 Billion NEVI program
Two prong approach is that these funds will be used in the deployment of approved state-proposed EV charging infrastructure and the formation of an interconnected network to facilitate data collection, access and reliability. The first part is split over five years, the first part being a $615 million disbursement for 2022 and an estimated $885 million for 2023.
This program required each state to submit plans to the federal government, laying out where the EV charging stations would be, these are a minimum of four 150-kW DC fast-charging units, every 50 miles. Today, all states have submitted plans and are approved.
In the past months leading up to approval by the federal government, states had to create a very detailed plan that included working with the federal government to fine-tune each state's plan that covered charging routes that are also designed Alternative Fuel Corridors.
Those that would like to see the plan for their state can do so at this joint state/federal website.
State Plans for Electric Vehicle Charging · Joint Office of Energy and Transportation (driveelectric.gov)
In total, 75,820 miles of interstate/Federal highways have been designated Alternative Fuel Corridors as of July 2022.
Thanksgiving is upon us, and the Energy Department's Alternative Fueling Station Locator map has been updated to now cover Ready and Pending EV Corridors. You can check the actual stations by clicking on the Station Location check box.
The Map allows you to zoom in and out to get better details of corridors near you. Alternative Fuels Data Center Map is as of November 2022. You can clearly see dark green for ready and lite green for pending corridors.
Most useful is the pending corridors so one can make choices about road-trip routes. Looking at specific state plans will give you an understanding of how soon each corridor will be built out. The bulk of the identified corridors will all be built out by mid-decade.
It is understandable that significant gaps will still exist. These could be covered by private businesses and or will fall under the rural planning. The benefit is that this is a glance into the future for those needing fast-charging stations for road-trips.
The alternative Fuels Data Center has a large selection of helpful tools that cover calculators, interactive maps, data searches, fuel providers and more to assist with making a wide range of decisions.
Alternative Fuels Data Center: Tools (energy.gov)
Here are just a few of the tools afdc provides for us to include in the websites for ease of use.
Alternative Fuels Data Center: Alternative Fueling Station Locator (energy.gov)
NEVI - Environment - FHWA (dot.gov)
Alternative Fuels Data Center: National Alternative Fuels Corridors (energy.gov)
Alternative Fuels Data Center: Station Data for Alternative Fuel Corridors (energy.gov)
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