In a significant move towards realizing President Joe Biden’s vision of deploying 500,000 electric vehicle (EV) chargers across the United States by 2030, the Biden administration has declared on Thursday a federal investment of $623 million.
This funding will be directed towards bolstering the EV charging network, encompassing 47 projects spanning 22 states and Puerto Rico. Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg, during a press briefing on Wednesday, emphasized the goal of adding 7,500 new EV charging ports through various charging and alternative fuel initiatives.
Buttigieg underscored the administration’s commitment to facilitating convenient and affordable EV charging solutions in diverse settings, including urban and rural communities. The grants, originating from the 2021 Bipartisan Infrastructure Law, aim to bridge charging accessibility gaps, particularly in areas lacking rapid charging infrastructure. Buttigieg cited challenges faced by individuals in apartments, rural regions, or those routinely covering longer distances, emphasizing the pivotal role these projects play in addressing such disparities.
One notable recipient of a $1.4 million grant is the Chilkoot Indian Association, an Alaskan Native Tribe. This funding will support the construction of a charging station in a rural community currently devoid of public charging facilities. The administration positioned this initiative as not only advancing sustainable transportation but also fostering job creation. White House National Climate Advisor Ali Zaidi highlighted the administration’s commitment to ensuring that EVs are produced in the U.S., generating employment opportunities with a focus on the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers.
The administration reported a nearly 70% increase in publicly available charging ports since President Biden assumed office. Acknowledging that the initial charging stations from the 2021 infrastructure law became operational only last month, Buttigieg affirmed that this investment represents a crucial component of a broader national strategy. He credited President Biden’s leadership and the infrastructure law for securing funding for tens of thousands more charging stations as part of a comprehensive national effort.