Diverse coalition forms to lobby for construction of electric vehicle charging network

An electric vehicle charging station (Flickr/Pat Gerber)

A coalition of 24 groups – representing thousands of companies, union members, investors, and advocates – has formed to spur the construction of a national electric vehicle charging network.

The National EV Charging Initiative will “push for deeper commitments” from member groups and the federal government to make national EV charging infrastructure a reality. Members entered into a memorandum of understanding with participants pledging to collaborate with all levels of government to build the network for cars, light trucks, and heavy-duty vehicles.

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“These groups are ready, willing, and able to work together to build the national charging network needed to meet the Biden administration’s goal of transforming our transportation system,” Colleen Quinn, president of eMobility Advisors and the coalition’s organizer, said in a statement. “Investing in this system will contribute to a just transition that creates good jobs, addresses the climate crisis, and cuts air pollution.”

Through the various advocacy groups that signed on, GM, Ford, Nissan, Honda, BMW, Toyota, and Mazda are represented, along with Uber and Lyft.

“We will have the plugs we need to electrify our vehicles. Private companies have already installed more than 100,000 public charging stations in the U.S. and investor-owned utilities are investing $3 billion to help deploy charging infrastructure for cars, trucks, and buses,” said Max Baumhefner, a senior attorney at the Natural Resources Defense Council. “With new federal investments and breakthroughs in battery technology, range anxiety should soon go the way of the horse-drawn carriage.”

Source: U.S. Dept. of Energy

There are 5,263 electric vehicle charging stations with 18,885 outlets, in the U.S., according to the Dept. of Energy. That’s compared to more than 150,000 gas stations.

The bipartisan infrastructure package passed by the U.S. Senate this week includes $7.5 billion for EV infrastructure. The deal must still be approved by the House of Representatives. President Biden’s goal is for electric vehicles to make up 50% of vehicles sold in the U.S. by 2030.

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