500,000 EV Chargers Under Joe Biden: How, When, and Where

In this episode of CleanTech Talk, Travis Allan, Vice President of Public Affairs and General Counsel at FLO, and Zach Shahan, CEO of CleanTechnica, talk about the how, the when, and the where of US President Joe Biden’s target to get 500,000 EV chargers installed by 2030.

Several years ago, Travis started focusing on how to decarbonize the entire transportation system in North America at a climate-focused law firm he used to run with a couple of other partners. That led him to FLO, an EV charging leader in North America. In the past few years, he has been working at FLO and helping this EV charging company find its way forward in the market and positively shape the market.

When it comes to US President Joe Biden’s target to get 500,000 EV chargers installed in the US by 2030, several questions keep coming up: Where should the chargers go? What kind of chargers should they be? When should they be installed in different portions of the market? What specific policies will make all of this happen?

Travis was quite impressive with his depth and breadth of knowledge in this field, and how he helped answer these questions. This article doesn’t cover the answers adequately at all — it mostly just summarizes the topics. I do recommend listening to this podcast to get detailed insight from Travis on how the country, states, cities, and utilities should proceed.

An interesting point he made at one point in the discussion is that the Volkswagen settlement money (from its long diesel cheating scandal) helped a bit to show how and where funding can be funneled. It must have opened up doors and minds for future funding by getting the topic of EV transition in front of more people’s eyes while also providing some evidence of what works and what doesn’t to stimulate more EV sales.

Another big note was how important equity is in how we proceed. In particular, there’s the big challenge of providing convenient EV charging for people who live in apartments, condos, etc. However, equity is not just about housing type and economic status — it’s also a geographical question. Travis pointed out that a good balance is needed between urban and rural EV charging infrastructure, and emphasized the importance of smooth integration across both types of human geography.

Furthermore, Travis highlighted the importance of good data collection and minimum uptime criteria when laying out funding for new charging stations. Overall, having good performance criteria is going to lead to better EV charging experiences and quicker EV adoption.

We also talked about the role of utilities in advancing EV charging and the EV market, policy solutions for EV charging at multi-unit dwelling units, building codes, curbside EV charger design and policy, fleet charging, celebrating success stories, and a number of other topics.

For much, much more, listen to the full podcast via the SoundCloud player above or your favorite podcasting network if it’s not SoundCloud (links below).

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