By Alice Seeley
The U.S. Department of Transportation and Energy announced a $5 billion investment to build electric vehicle charging stations across the country in an attempt to ease Americans’ dependence on gas-powered cars.
This law is part of President Joe Biden’s $1 trillion bipartisan infrastructure bill. The Electric Vehicle (EV) program will distribute the money to qualifying states over five years. The law will place new or upgraded EV charging stations every 50 miles along interstate highways.
Currently, transportation is the U.S.’s most significant source of carbon emissions.
“A century ago, America ushered in the modern automotive era; now America must lead the electric vehicle revolution,” said U.S. Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg.
This is the largest-ever federal investment in electric vehicles. Of these funds, $4.75 billion will be distributed to states depending on their infrastructure needs. More populated states will receive more funding. States must first submit an EV Infrastructure Deployment Plan to qualify for the funds.
An additional $2.5 billion will be distributed through a grant program to ensure that the charger deployment meets several priorities, such as charges in rural areas, a plan to improve air quality, and increasing EV charging access in disadvantaged communities.
Buttigieg stated that it is unclear how many chargers will be bought.
“It really depends on how the states decide to mix the fast chargers and different types of technology,” he said.
The International Council on Clean Transportation estimated that to support an expansion in electric vehicles, the U.S. would need to have 2 million EV chargers by 2030.