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February 23, 2024

Biden Administration Announces $1 Billion Investment to Expand EV Charging Network

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Jan 21, 2024

The Biden Administration today announced nearly $1 billion in funding to repair, upgrade and expand electric vehicle (EV) charging infrastructure across the country. The investments are part of President Biden’s broader plan to accelerate the adoption of EVs and build out a national charging network to facilitate long-distance travel.

Key Details of Funding Plan

The funding includes $615 million to install EV chargers along interstate highways, $125 million to upgrade charging infrastructure in rural areas and disadvantaged communities, and $140 million to fund planning and acquisition of charging stations for government fleets. Additionally, $300 million has been allocated to replace and upgrade outdated publicly accessible charging stations [1].

“The charging stations funded under this plan will serve as the backbone of America’s EV charging network,” said Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg in a statement [2]. “With convenient and reliable charging stations every 50 miles on interstates and close to home, we can make EV charging accessible for more Americans.”

The funding is being distributed through several new and existing programs at the Department of Transportation and Department of Energy [3]:

  • $615 million for the National Electric Vehicle Infrastructure Formula Program to install EV charging infrastructure on interstate highways and build the foundation of a national charging network.
  • $140 million for grant programs to acquire EV fleet charging equipment for federal, state and local government vehicles.
  • $125 million for grant programs in rural and disadvantaged communities to increase EV adoption and equitable access to charging infrastructure.
  • $300 million for the Charging and Fueling Infrastructure Grants program to modernize and reconnect the country’s existing federal Alternative Fuel Corridors, including along the interstate highway system.

Reaction from Industry and Advocacy Groups

The new funding has been praised by EV industry groups, charging providers, environmental organizations and state agencies that plan to apply for the newly available grants.

“This investment will go a long way towards making EV adoption more seamless and convenient for Americans,” said Mark Wakefield, managing director at AlixPartners, a consulting firm focused on the auto industry [4]. “Fixing gaps in reliability and expanding fast charging options brings us closer to that inflection point where purchasing an EV is just as easy a choice as a gas vehicle for most car buyers.”

Background Leading Up to Funding Announcement

The Biden Administration first signaled its commitment to expanding EV charging infrastructure with the passage of the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law in 2021, which included $7.5 billion to build out a national network of 500,000 EV chargers across America [5].

The new funding announced today represents an initial down payment on that planned $7.5 billion investment. President Biden has made tackling the climate crisis a centerpiece of his agenda, setting a target to make half of all new vehicle sales electric by 2030 [6].

A key barrier to increased EV adoption by consumers is “range anxiety” – concerns over running out of charge when traveling long distances. The interstate charging stations funded in this plan directly tackle that issue.

What Comes Next

The funding announced today kicks off what is expected to be a multi-year effort to expand and upgrade EV charging infrastructure across the country.

States and local governments will still need to apply for the newly available grants and then contract with private sector vendors to actually build and operate EV chargers [7]. So it will take some time before new chargers become operational.

Additionally, the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law included requirements related to labor and domestic manufacturing that may impact how funding is implemented [8]. There is also likely to be continued debate around issues like fee structures, data sharing and the interoperability of charging stations built by different vendors.

So while today’s announcement is a milestone, there are still many open questions surrounding the expansion of America’s EV charging network. The funding signals the federal government’s commitment, but actual on-the-ground implementation will take continued coordination between policymakers, industry and local communities.

Table 1: Breakdown of Announced Federal Funding for EV Charging Infrastructure

Program Administering Agency Funding Amount Key Details
National Electric Vehicle Infrastructure Formula Program Department of Transportation $615 million Funding to states to install EV charging infrastructure on interstate highways and build out a national network.
Charging and Fueling Infrastructure Grants Department of Transportation $140 million Grants to acquire EV fleet charging equipment for federal, state and local government vehicles.
Charging and Fueling Infrastructure Grants Department of Transportation $125 million Grants focused on increasing EV adoption and charging access in rural and disadvantaged communities.
Charging and Fueling Infrastructure Grants Department of Transportation $300 million Funding to modernize and reconnect federal Alternative Fuel Corridors, including along interstates.

References

  1. https://www.nytimes.com/2024/01/19/us/politics/electric-vehicle-chargers-tax-credits.html
  2. https://www.transportation.gov/briefing-room/us-department-transportation-announces-over-1-billion-grants-all-50-states-ev-charging
  3. https://www.energy.gov/eere/articles/energy-department-announces-1-billion-invest-america-agenda-commitments-accelerate
  4. https://www.detroitnews.com/story/business/autos/2024/01/18/consulting-firm-foresees-ev-inflection-point/7227173
  5. https://www.whitehouse.gov/briefing-room/statements-releases/2021/11/06/fact-sheet-the-bipartisan-infrastructure-deal-boosts-clean-transportation/
  6. https://www.whitehouse.gov/briefing-room/statements-releases/2021/08/05/fact-sheet-president-biden-announces-steps-to-drive-american-leadership-forward-on-clean-cars-and-trucks/
  7. https://kjzz.org/content/1868488/mesa-cochise-county-san-carlos-apache-reservation-are-getting-new-electric-car
  8. https://www.thebaynet.com/maryland-electrifies-new-year-with-move-to-expand-states-electric-vehicle-charging-infrastructure/
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AiBot scans breaking news and distills multiple news articles into a concise, easy-to-understand summary which reads just like a news story, saving users time while keeping them well-informed.

To err is human, but AI does it too. Whilst factual data is used in the production of these articles, the content is written entirely by AI. Double check any facts you intend to rely on with another source.

By AiBot

AiBot scans breaking news and distills multiple news articles into a concise, easy-to-understand summary which reads just like a news story, saving users time while keeping them well-informed.

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