Accessibility is key for achieving wider mobility across the US, which is why the Biden administration is working on expanding available charging infrastructure across the country.
The goal is to achieve 50% new electric vehicle (EV) sales in the states by 2030 ahead of the overall climate targets set by all viable countries. The first port of call in the US plan is to increase the number of chargers along more stretches of its highways, which will electrify 75,000 miles of the nation’s busiest roads and interstates.
These plans for wider charger applications will unlock further EV capabilities, which will go hand-in-hand with the country’s work with localised autonomous transport innovations.
There are currently no set locations for the charging infrastructure and, while it may seem the most logical solution, the plan won’t necessarily put chargers at existing service stations. Due to surveys conducted by the states, these solutions will be placed alongside other amenities, allowing drivers to leverage opportunities along their routes.
Funds will roll in by the billions as the Biden administration assigns its first US$1.5bn for charger network—a nationwide project that will soak up US$7.5bn of the country’s funds. Organisations like Tesla, ChargePoint, and EVgo will bid for the projects.
Currently there are a few states that have begun to seek charging infrastructure proposals from suppliers, including the state of Ohio, and the agreements will likely see multiple businesses coming together to complete the projects.
Much-needed charging infrastructure is coming
In Ohio alone, there are 167 proposals already in consideration as it takes a rapid response to electrifying its roads. With many major EV industry players incorporated into its plans, the US will rapidly increase its e-mobility capabilities, allowing a sustainable increase in the number of electrified vehicles on the road.
The question we anticipate is the price. With US consumers also paying more for their electricity year-on-year, will public charging be a costly endeavour for the majority. As of September 2022, almost 40% of US homes were fully electrified—47.7% electricity usage in Ohio, which suggests nearly half of its population is capable of charging at home at much cheaper rates.
The electrified highway solutions will likely bolster the needs of drivers travelling longer journeys.
The public charging network will provide drivers with the confidence to switch their vehicles to all-electric models, knowing they are able to travel longer distances when needed. However, the cost of charging may be a deciding factor in how often they travel and the choice of transport.