Commission Funds Electric Vehicle Chargers Along Major Routes

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Posted: Sunday, April 17, 2016 8:37 pm | Updated: 11:12 am, Wed Apr 20, 2016.

SACRAMENTO, Calif. -- The California Energy Commission approved nearly $9 million in grants for the installation of DC fast chargers along major state freeways and highways to allow electric vehicle drivers to travel from San Diego to the Oregon border without worrying about running out of energy.

The grants went to four companies: Chargepoint Inc., EV Connect Inc., NRG EV Services LLC., and Recargo, Inc., which will install 61 DC fast chargers at 41 sites along major routes on Interstate 5, Highway 99 and Highway 101. Fast chargers allow vehicles to fully charge in 20 to 30 minutes. Additionally, 40 sites will have one Level 2 charger, and one site will have two Level 2 chargers. Level 2 chargers allow most vehicles to go from zero to full charge in four to eight hours.

Several plug-in electric vehicle charging networks currently operate in metropolitan areas. However, private industry has been hesitant to develop sites along highway corridors.

Commissioners also approved an additional $12.6 million in funding to the Natural Gas Vehicle Incentive Project, which offers incentives for the purchase of natural gas vehicles. This funding will help reduce the current wait list as well as fund future applications. The University of California, Irvine, administers the program. Last year the Energy Commission allocated more than $11 million to recipients to purchase natural gas vehicle for use in California for at least three years. These incentives can help fleet managers replace aging gasoline and diesel vehicles with cleaner alternatives.

The grants for both the chargers and the natural gas vehicle incentives are funded through the Alternative and Renewable Fuel and Vehicle Technology Program, which aims to reduce California’s use and dependence on petroleum transportation fuels and increase the use of alternative and renewable fuels and advanced vehicle technologies.

SOURCE: California Energy Commission

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