The reliability (or lack thereof) of public EV chargers is nothing less than a scandal, and the Biden Administration, which has championed a major expansion of the nation’s EV charging infrastructure, is well aware of the problems.
Now the Administration has opened applications for the Electric Vehicle Charger Reliability and Accessibility Accelerator, which will provide up to $100 million in federal funding to repair and replace existing but non-operational EV charging infrastructure. Grants are available for both publicly and privately owned chargers, so long as they are available to the public.
Eligible applicants and projects are outlined in a Notice of Funding Opportunity. Applications are due by November 13.
The National Electric Vehicle Infrastructure (NEVI) Formula Program, a $5-billion program created to help states build out EV charging sites, includes a 10% set-aside for grants to states and localities that require additional assistance. The first round of funding will focus on improving the reliability of the current network by repairing or replacing existing EV chargers.
The program is informed by the DOE’s Alternative Fueling Station Locator, which identifies offline stations that are unavailable for whatever reason. On September 11, 2023, the AFDC indicated that out of 151,506 public charging ports, 6,261 (4.1%) were “temporarily” unavailable.
“Thanks to President Biden’s Investing in America agenda, we are building up a national EV charging network with chargers Made in the USA,” said Secretary of Energy Jennifer M. Granholm. “Today’s investment is a pivotal step toward revitalizing our current charging infrastructure, making EV driving cheaper, more reliable and more convenient.”
“Charging your electric vehicle should be as easy and convenient as filling up a gas tank—and this investment will make our EV charging network more reliable, full stop,” said Federal Highway Administrator Shailen Bhatt. “We’re building a bigger EV charging network to keep up with driver demand, and we’re also going to make sure the currently available network is working when you need a charge.”