One of the looming issues with the impending release of mass-marketed electric vehicles is EV charging stations – it’s always been a question of who will put in the infrastructure and when. Well, it looks like the US government is stepping up to the plate as the Senate Energy Committee just approved a $3.6 billion dollar bill that would go towards creating a nation-wide electric vehicle charging system. The bill still has to pass on the Senate floor and get approved by Congress, but this is the first positive step in a much needed clean transportation direction.
The bill was authored by U.S. Sen. Byron Dorgan, D-N.D., who wants to provide electric vehicle charging stations and infrastructure in order to persuade Americans that EVs are the way to go. He wants to make it an easy and quick switch from gas guzzlers and believes — and we agree — that making it easy to charge an EV is probably the best thing you can do to make people want to buy them. The bill would create a series of deployment communities that would be testing grounds for EV charging technologies where the government would be able to find the best strategy for widespread EV infrastructure. As we all know, a seamless infrastructure is the key to a seamless transportation system.
“Passing this legislation will strengthen our national security and improve the air we breathe, while relying on our abundant and diverse electricity supply to fuel our cars,” Dorgan noted. “We are now one step closer to dramatically reducing our dangerous dependence on foreign oil that hurts our economy, helps our enemies and puts our security at risk.” The Senate is also working on passing a $25 billion retooling loan program for advanced technology vehicles which would provide loans for domestic manufacturing facilities so that they can retool their machinery to produce EVs and retrain their employees on how to use the new machinery. All the while the Senate still hopes to approve the looming Energy Bill before they go home for recess next month. It has been noted that the $3.6 billion infrastructure bill and the $25 billion retooling loan program could be squashed into the larger Energy Bill, but that has yet to be decided. Nothing’s written in stone as of yet, but at least we’re inching in the right direction.
Via Autoblog Green