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Rapid US transition to BEVs drives charging station growth

As the need to decarbonize transportation grows, the United States is taking a leading role in evaluating the requirements for electric vehicle chargers. A recent report by the International Council on Clean Transportation (ICCT) delves into critical questions surrounding the number of chargers necessary to support the increasing sales of electric light-duty vehicles in the US. Additionally, it evaluates whether the current deployment of charging infrastructure, as of 2023, is sufficient to meet this escalating demand.

Based on estimates of potential market growth from the Environmental Protection Agency’s proposed Multi-Pollutant Emissions Standards, battery-electric vehicles (BEVs) could make up 67% of new U.S. light-duty vehicle sales in 2032. This market growth could mean that 55 million electric passenger cars will be on the road.

The ICCT analyzed more than 160 announcements about charger installations or investments in charging infrastructure by various stakeholders, including federal and state governments, charging infrastructure providers, automakers, retail companies, and utilities. The report offers an extensive account of these announced charging infrastructure deployments through 2030 and compares these findings to updated modeling of charging needs.

The report indicates that the United States is making significant strides in meeting the charging demands of its growing battery electric vehicle (BEV) fleet, underscoring positive progress toward adopting clean transportation. Projections suggest that by 2030, a combined total of 164,000 new DC fast chargers and 1.5 million new Level 2 chargers could be deployed at public locations and workplaces. Notably, private stakeholders have committed to deploying approximately 74,000 DC fast chargers and around 265,000 Level 2 chargers by the same year.

Non-home EV chargers needed by 2030 compared with announced deployments. | Credit: ICCT

Furthermore, it is anticipated that additional unspecified commitments from these stakeholders will result in an extra 91,000 DC fast chargers and 1.25 million Level 2 chargers by 2030. In addition to private initiatives, charging announcements from federal government agencies, states, and utilities could potentially contribute up to 47,000 new DC fast chargers and 579,000 new Level 2 chargers. However, it remains uncertain whether these commitments may overlap with those made by private stakeholders. 

As of 2023, the ICCT says the announcements make up a substantial share of non-home chargers needed by 2030. The impending BEV fleet will require about 2.6 million Level 2 chargers at public locations and workplaces and about 108,000 DC fast chargers in 2030. Comparing these needs with announcements, the report finds that announced charging deployments from private stakeholders could cover about 182% of the needed public DC fast chargers and about 62% of the needed public and workplace Level 2 chargers in 2030.

With the inclusion of potential additional chargers from government and utility stakeholders, announced deployments could provide about 225% of the needed public DC fast chargers and about 84% of the needed public and workplace Level 2 chargers.

“The transition to electric vehicles in the United States requires continued growth in charging infrastructure deployment. The good news is announcements of future deployment already sum up to most of what we find is needed by 2030” said Logan Pierce, Associate Researcher at the ICCT.


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