How EVCS is Helping Change America’s EV Charging Experience

March 3, 2022 5:12 pm

March 3rd, 2022

As most of us know, Congress recently approved $7.5 billion in spending for new EV charging installations as part of the larger infrastructure bill, which we expect will help facilitate a speedier transition away from fossil fuels. Even with EV sales increasing in recent years, reports suggest that 25 percent of all carbon emissions still come from the tailpipe, so anything the government can do to kick things up a notch is surely welcome. However, even with such a sizable investment, many challenges still exist that network operators like EVCS will have to help overcome. In a recent article on TheVerge.com, several prescient examples were cited of core areas to focus on if we want to make mass EV adoption a reality. Below are a few such areas and how EVCS is addressing them.

$5 billion will have to be made available to states “to create a network of EV charging stations along designated ‘Alternative Fuel Corridors’, particularly along the Interstate Highway System.”

Many consumers have cited range anxiety as a major concern when considering the transition to electric. A charger at home and perhaps one at the local coffee shop is fine, but long-range travel requires a network of chargers along major arteries that connect cities and states. Ever since our purchase of the West Coast Electric Highway, one of the original “Alternative Fuel Corridors,” we have been focused on installing more chargers near highway on- and off-ramps as well as key tourist destinations to help incentivize long-range travel and alleviate range anxiety.

“The charging experience in the US is intensely fragmented, especially for people who don’t own a Tesla. While Tesla’s Supercharger network has been praised for its seamless user experience and fast charging ability, the opposite appears to be true for pretty much everyone else.”

A major goal at EVCS is both the defragmentation and democratization of the American charging experience for all drivers, not just those with Teslas. This endeavor not only includes us building a more ubiquitous network of chargers outside populated urban centers, but making sure they are fast, easily accessible (i.e., not locked away inside a gated parking garage) and employ a user-friendly interface with simple search functionality, subscription payment options and top-notch customer service. We want to offer VIP-level service regardless of what you drive.

“Not only will it simply take a while to build out [thousands of new] chargers, but the majority of what gets built will likely be of the ‘Level 2’ variety.”

The new infrastructure bill does indeed permit funding to go toward DC fast chargers; however, more funds are likely to go toward cheaper and slower Level 2 chargers because installers can put many more in the ground for the same amount of money. We understand that slower charging times may dissuade some drivers from switching to EVs, which is why we’re using our resources to install or upgrade as many chargers in our network to DCFCs as possible. One of our fast chargers can juice a standard EV battery to 80% in the time it takes to do a typical grocery shopping.

In addition to the $615 million earmarked this year for Alternative Fuel Corridors, a “grant program designed to further increase EV charging access in locations throughout the country, including rural and underserved communities, will be announced later this year.”

Here is yet another area where EVCS has been ahead of the curve. Almost since our inception, we have focused on installing chargers in underserved areas, as we believe democratizing the EV charging experience means greater accessibility in all locations, not just the most affluent. Many drivers in lower-income communities are eager to participate in the greening of society, and we aim to make that possible. Any additional grant programs from the government may simply allow us to accelerate such endeavors.

The Verge article sums things up nicely when it says, “A more dependable charging network will likely help juice EV sales in the US over the next decade.” We agree, but for now, we’re content to let our actions speak louder than our words.

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