Report questions Biden’s willingness to install electric car chargers at gas stations

A well-known independent fuel price and gas station newsletter has expressed skepticism that many more electric vehicle (EV) charging stations will be added to U.S. gas stations in line with government priorities. Biden administration regarding the country’s transportation infrastructure.

The Nov. 17 edition of Lundberg’s letter called advocacy for much broader coverage of electric vehicle chargers in such contexts an “emerging mess.”

“Gasoline retailers are being told by experts they need to install electric vehicle chargers to survive the ‘energy transition’ and take advantage of lucrative subsidies. This report notes some problems with this panacea, including huge costs, limited demand, government competition and thin margins,” the report says.

An electric vehicle charger in Manhattan, NY on Dec. 7, 2021. (Andrew Kelly/Reuters)

“On top of all that, most of the promised future electric car customers will be filling up at home, not at gas stations.”

Biden administration wants more chargers

In coordination with the Democratic-controlled 117th Congress, the Biden administration has pursued numerous policies aimed at increasing electric vehicle sales, including spending to increase the number of electric vehicle chargers at U.S. gas stations.

The 2021 infrastructure bill made $7.5 billion available for a national electric vehicle charging network. Some $900 million was released in September 2022 after the Biden administration endorsed proposals for a 35-state electric vehicle charging network.

It’s part of a broader attempt to rapidly expand the adoption of electric vehicles in the United States. The administration wants half of all vehicles sold in the United States to be what it describes as “zero-emission vehicles” by 2030. fuel cell,” according to a 2021 White House announcement.

Epoch Times Photo
U.S. Vice President Kamala Harris (right) with SemaConnect CEO Mahi Reddy at the Brandywine Maintenance Facility in Prince George’s County during a visit to announce SemaConnect’s electric vehicle charging action plan the Biden administration, in Brandywine, Maryland, on December 13, 2021. (Kevin Lamarque/Reuters)

Additionally, the US Postal Service received $3 billion for a fleet of electric vehicles and associated charging infrastructure. Environmentalists and some Democrats believe the agency is not moving fast enough on this front, prompting House Oversight and Reform Chair Carolyn Maloney (DN.Y.) to ask for a timeline and a plan for these expenses at the US Post Office.

Meanwhile, Republicans took a softer line on electrification in the last Congress — a sign of things to come from a GOP-dominated House.

“While Republicans are not against the Postal Service acquiring electric vehicles, we are against mandates that ignore the business needs and financial condition of the Postal Service,” said James Comer (R-Ky), member of the classification of supervision and reform, during an April 2022. meeting on the fleet of the Post.

Maloney previously said additional funding from Congress, along with the recently passed $50 billion relief bill for the Postal Service, could be used to purchase more electric vehicles for the agency.

Epoch Times Photo
Rep. James Comer (R-Ky.), a ranking member of the House Oversight Committee, during a hearing in Washington on July 27, 2022. (Drew Angerer/Getty Images)

“Republicans think the Postal Service should be self-funding. This means the Postal Service would have to pay for its own capital needs, such as purchasing new vehicles,” Comer continued.

Debates over whether and how to fund electric vehicles and electric vehicle charging infrastructure do not always break down along clear partisan lines.

California’s Proposition 30, which would have funded electric vehicle charging stations through a tax on residents with incomes over $2 million a year, failed to pass on Nov. 8.

Although the state’s Democratic Party supported Proposition 30, California Governor Gavin Newsom rejected it, saying it operated as a taxpayer subsidy for ride-sharing company Lyft. That aligned the left-leaning governor, seen by some as a potential Biden replacement in 2024, with his state’s Republican Party, which also opposed Proposition 30.

Epoch Times Photo
California Governor Gavin Newsom listens to a question during a press conference in Los Angeles on Nov. 10, 2021. (Patrick T. Fallon/AFP via Getty Images)

‘Astronomical growth’ is required for existing electric car chargers to make sense

Lundberg’s letter noted that electric vehicle charging stations have proliferated in recent years, growing from 31,738 in 2020 to 50,054 in 2021, according to the Energy Information Administration. They attributed this growth to “lavish government subsidies”.

They argued that Level 1 and Level 2 EV chargers are too slow to make sense at gas stations, meaning stations would have to buy expensive Level 3 chargers, and even those chargers take a lot. longer than a gas pump.

Lundberg’s letter estimated that the vast majority of current electric vehicle customers charge their vehicles at home or at free public stations. Their analysis suggests that the existing private network of EV chargers is already overloaded, assuming there is no surge in demand in the near future.

“It will take astronomical growth in the electric car population to justify even the current stability of electric car stations, let alone the massive growth predicted in the years to come,” the letter states.

The Epoch Times reached out to electric car charging experts for comment.

Nathan Worcester


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