A recent change to fuel stations is sure to make things easier for electric vehicle owners in 2024.
As reported by Bloomberg, nearly 1,100 public fast-charging stations were installed across the United States in the second half of 2023. The 16% increase means there is now at least “one quick-turn EV station for every 16 or so gas stations in the country,” the report stated.
The addition of the new charging stations is part of a continued effort to reduce the amount of “charging deserts” and make battery-powered driving easier and more convenient.
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In 2024, states will use $5 billion in federal money to ensure charging stations are more accessible across the country, Bloomberg reported. The National Electric Vehicle Infrastructure program has a goal of having a public, fast-charging station at least every 50 miles along the country’s major travel areas, per the news outlet.
“It will be a constant drumbeat of new stations,” Albert Gore, executive director of the Zero Emission Transportation Association, told Bloomberg. “We’re really confident that charging infrastructure is not going to be a constraint on EV deployment in the United States.”
Seven states, including Alaska, Hawaii, and Kentucky, have already begun using those federal funds. The first of the federally backed charging stations began operating just west of Columbus, Ohio, in December.
The increase in chargers isn’t limited to only the areas where EVs are most popular. Idaho added 12 fast-charging stations between July and December. Collectively, Alabama, Arkansas, Mississippi, and Tennessee established 56 new fast-charging stations in the second half of last year, a 33% increase. Florida and Texas are ranked as the No. 2 and No. 3 states for charging spots, respectively — all according to Bloomberg.
“This is just a very exciting moment,” said Katherine Garcia, director of Clean Transportation for All at the Sierra Club. “And I think we’re going to continue seeing this growth trajectory.”
The federally funded increase in charging stations isn’t the only endeavor geared toward eliminating the country’s charging deserts. Tesla Inc. has begun opening its network of Superchargers to vehicles made by other automakers. General Motors is planning to add 40,000 EV-friendly stations to rural areas. Ikea is adding ultra-fast electric car charging stations to 25 of its stores across 18 states.
Considering the harm gas-powered transportation causes to the environment — a typical car produces over 10,000 pounds of carbon pollution per year — hopefully, this infrastructure boost will also encourage more drivers to make the switch to EVs.
“There’s all of these things that are creating a reinforcing virtuous cycle to accelerate the transition, which is good because we need to make as much progress as we can as soon as possible, both for the climate and local air quality,” Samantha Houston, senior vehicles analyst at the Union of Concerned Scientists, told Bloomberg.
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