ChargePoint is partnering with Charge Across Town and the state of California to tackle one of the biggest challenges to electric mobility - making electric vehicle (EV) charging accessible to everyone, even those living in apartment buildings and condo complexes. This initiative will install hundreds of EV chargers at multifamily properties across California, with 75 percent reserved for buildings in disadvantaged or low-income communities.
Through the project, residents living in multifamily buildings are expected to drive over 2.7 million electric miles within five years of charger installation. Together, these new EV drivers will eliminate more than 1.1 million metric tons of carbon dioxide-equivalent – that’s the same as planting more than 18 million trees and growing them for an entire decade.
Emission reductions like this are key to meeting President Biden’s 2030 climate goals and achieving those goals are only possible if we get every American into electric vehicles. To make that happen, we must do more than provide charging infrastructure to drivers – we need to power a shift in understanding of EV charging too.
First, we need to show drivers that powering an EV is a lot like charging your smartphone – 80 percent of it happens either at home or the office and before the battery hits five percent. Just like with our phones, most EV drivers top off their charge whenever their car is sitting idle – this typically takes place for the longest stretches of time when we’re either working or resting. By moving away from the gas station model and towards the smartphone concept for charging, we can eliminate the range anxiety that keeps some drivers from making the shift to electric.
And while so much of the federal investment has been focused on supercharging along highways, chargers should also be available where people live. We need to help families understand the affordability of driving electric and the incentives that come with it. For that reason, it’s critical to focus on installing chargers in multifamily buildings where residents don’t have access to personal garages. It’s also important that we double down on making EVs accessible to everyone regardless of income level. Because if done right, EV charging can be easy and accessible for every driver, everywhere.
That’s why in addition to installing chargers in disadvantaged communities, ChargePoint is proud to partner with Charge Across Town to organize educational events before and after new chargers are installed. Programs like these are essential to accelerating the transition to EVs, but they’re only part of the solution. Making sure every driver has access to at-home charging requires the cooperation of both the public and private sectors to create new processes and legislation that will make EVs and EV charging easier, faster, and more accessible around the country. The charging solutions that California has implemented for its residents are setting an example for the country to follow, and we’re excited to partner with other states to ensure the successful electrification of American transportation.
Katie Tomarchio is the Senior Manager of Public Policy for ChargePoint. ChargePoint is a leading electric vehicle charging network with 15 years of experience in the industry.