The American Public Power Association and the U.S. Department of Energy will pursue collaborative efforts to advance electric vehicle adoption and charging infrastructure construction in public power communities across the United States, APPA and the DOE pledged July 22 in Washington, D.C.
In signing a memorandum of understanding, APPA President and CEO Sue Kelly and DOE Acting Assistant Secretary for Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy David Friedman said they will both work to develop information and resources to increase education and awareness of the benefits of EVs to public power utilities and local officials in a partnership called "EV Everywhere — Public Power Charged."
"Given our strong commitment to environmental stewardship, public power is honored to partner with the DOE to promote increased use of electric vehicles," Kelly said. "We want to be responsive to changing customer preferences and help our members prepare for the future of transportation."
One major result of this agreement is the planned development of a community action plan that focuses on small- and medium-sized communities with fewer than 200,000 electric customers. There are almost 2,000 public power communities with fewer than 200,000 customers. Education materials such as webinars and guidebooks will be created with many different audiences in mind, including utility employees, board of directors, city council members, mayors, and state-level representatives.
The hope is that this will lead to increased efforts to construct workplace charging facilities at utilities and community businesses and allow for the study of the impacts of EVs in public power communities, their utility infrastructure, and the modern grid. APPA will be able to share updates from the broader EV Everywhere Utility Partnership and give industry input on EV-related policy and technical issues through the Quadrennial Energy Review and the Quadrennial Technology Review.
"With the clean energy revolution accelerating and the electric vehicle market growing, it is critical that we expand cooperation as part of our EV Everywhere Grand Challenge," said Friedman. "APPA has shown tremendous leadership in promoting EVs among its network of public utilities, and with this MOU, we are eager to work together to electrify transportation with clean and renewable power in our biggest cities and smallest towns, ensuring that EVs truly are everywhere."
The partnership came a day after President Barack Obama's announcement of a federal-private plan to accelerate EV adoption in the U.S. This plan came with the announcement of $4.5 billion in loan guarantees to support innovative charging facilities, the development of EV charging corridors, a proposed plan for a national network of fast charging stations, and an emphasis on state, county, and municipal EV procurement.