Fuels

Coalition of Electric Companies to Support EV Charging Network

More than 50 firms join nationwide effort
electric vehicle charging stations
Photograph: Shutterstock

WASHINGTON — The Edison Electric Institute (EEI) is forming the National Electric Highway Coalition, which merges the Electric Highway Coalition and the Midwest Electric Vehicle Charging Infrastructure Collaboration and now includes additional participating electric companies from across the country.

Currently consisting of 51 investor-owned electric companies, one electric cooperative and the Tennessee Valley Authority, the coalition aims to provide electric vehicle (EV) fast charging ports along major U.S. travel corridors by the end of 2023.

Specific locations of the charging stations to be built through the program will be up to individual participating companies, an EEI spokesperson told CSP.

“EEI and our member companies are leading the clean energy transformation, and electric transportation is key to reducing carbon emissions across our economy,” said Tom Kuhm, president of EEI. “With the formation of the National Electric Highway Coalition, we are committed to investing in and providing the charging infrastructure necessary to facilitate electric vehicle growth and to helping alleviate any remaining customer range anxiety.”

To date, EEI’s member companies have invested more than $3 billion in customer programs and projects to deploy EV charging infrastructure and to accelerate electric transportation. As EV sales continue to grow, EEI estimates that more than 100,000 EV fast charging ports will be needed to support the projected 22 million EVs that will be on U.S. roads in 2030.

“By merging and expanding the existing efforts underway to build fast charging infrastructure along major travel corridors, we are building a foundational EV charging network that will help to encourage more customers to purchase an electric vehicle,” said Kuhn. “We owe a great deal of gratitude to the electric companies that created so much momentum at the regional level, paving the way for us to expand this effort nationally.”

“With scores of new battery-electric vehicles coming to market over the next couple of years, we need to get the charging infrastructure sited, built and funded,” said Philip B. Jones, executive director of the Alliance for Transportation Electrification. “The federal infrastructure funding will help a great deal in this effort, but this is only a down payment of a much larger effort. Electric companies, which are regulated by state commissions, can help leverage all funding sources, help fill the infrastructure gaps, and help manage the deployment of these chargers with a long-term view.”

Image courtesy of EEI

“The auto industry is committed to vehicle electrification and will invest over $330 billion in the technology by 2025. Additionally, a record number of EV models are expected to be available in this time frame," said John Bozzella, president and CEO of the Alliance for Automotive Innovation. "This, however, is only one piece of the puzzle. Addressing issues such as grid resiliency, energy demands for charging, and equitable rollout of charging infrastructure will be an integral part of a successful future for EVs in America. The National Electric Highway Coalition will support the EV transition by facilitating electric power industry engagement in transportation electrification across the country.”

EEI member companies are electrifying their own fleets and, collectively, are on track to electrify more than one-third of all fleet vehicles by 2030, it said. Electric companies also remain engaged with commercial fleet customers and are working together on electrification planning for medium- and heavy-duty vehicles.

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