The U.S. authorities on Monday, with the move of transforming the auto industry in the country released a federal strategy to build 500,000 charging stations for electric vehicles across the country thereby bringing down the cost of electric cars.
The U.S Vice President, Kamala Harris at an EV charging facility in Maryland appears to echo the electric car support rhetoric when she said:
“The future of transportation in our nation and around the world is electric”.
President Joe Biden had last month signed a $1 trillion infrastructure law that authorizes a nationwide network of charging stations, while setting aside $5 billion for states to build them, including $63 million for Maryland. The new law gives an additional $2.5 billion for local grants to support charging stations in rural areas and in disadvantaged communities.
A Senate-pending Biden’s $2 trillion social and environmental policy bill has a $7,500 tax credit to lower the cost of electric vehicles.
“We want to make electric vehicles accessible for everyone,” Harris said. “Absolutely make it accessible for everyone and easy. Just like filling up your car with gas.”
According to Harris, the automobile industry already is moving toward electric vehicles, “We need to make the shift faster and make sure it is driven by the United States,” she added.
When public chargers are installed in rural, urban or suburban neighbourhoods, “we make it easier for people to go electric,” Harris said, adding that the biggest barrier most people cite to buying an electric car is “figuring out where and how to charge it.”
She noted that people who live in apartments may not have a private driveway where they can install a plug, while rural residents may have to drive miles to the nearest charger.
The U.S number 2 also visited a maintenance facility in Brandywine, just outside Washington, and received a demonstration of how chargers work, while learning about a plan to electrify the government fleet in Maryland’s Prince George’s County.
While charging one of the vehicles, “There’s no sound or fume!” she exclaimed. “How do I know it’s actually working?” she asked with a laugh.
According to Mahidhar Reddy, CEO and founder of SemaConnect, a Maryland company that made the charging station, the car is fully charged when the display is a steady green.
In a statement by the White House, the new EV charging strategy aligns a joint electric vehicles office between the federal Energy and Transportation departments; issues guidance and standards for states; and ensures consultations with manufacturers, state and local governments, environmental justice and civil rights groups, tribes and others.
The two departments will synergize and launch an advisory committee on electric vehicles that officials believe will be in full action early next year.
According to the statement from the White House, the accelerated adoption of electric vehicles for personal cars and commercial fleets would help achieve the government’s goal of net-zero greenhouse gas emission by 2050 while creating thousands of jobs.