Accelerating the Electric Vehicle Market
National Grid is offering substantial financial incentives to commercial customers in its Upstate New York territory under the New York State EV Make-Ready Public Service Commission order, as part of a statewide joint utility program. The purpose of the EV Make-Ready Program is to accelerate the electric vehicle (EV) market transition through the implementation of public charging initiatives. The goal of the program is to create enough charging infrastructure to support 850,000 EVs in New York State by 2025. This is the most ambitious EV effort outside of California that supports equitable access to clean transportation choices and helps build a reliable charging network.
By providing greater access and more charging options, National Grid is supporting the growth of EV use. The program will balance the transportation ecosystem, which is the largest contributor of greenhouse gas emissions in the United States, according to the Environmental Protection Agency. Consequently, this program will help mitigate climate change, improve air quality, amplify access to cleaner transportation opportunities in underserved communities, and reduce our national reliance on petroleum.
New York’s Climate Leadership and Community Protection Act (CLCPA) addresses the historic effects of climate change on disadvantaged communities and institutes mechanisms to ensure these communities benefit from the clean transportation transition. The CLCPA requires all state agencies prioritize decarbonization in disadvantaged communities to tackle climate change and support healthy neighborhoods. The electrification of vehicles—cars, trucks, and busses–drastically help to reduce air pollution and boost clean mobility options, in these communities.
The EV Make-Ready Program supports New York State’s aggressive CLCPA goals by enabling EV adoption. It empowers EV drivers and accelerates the EV market by reducing range anxiety—one of the biggest barriers to EV adoption. In Phase I of National Grid’s EV Charging Infrastructure Incentive Program, the goal for Upstate New York was to secure commitments for 300 stations. National Grid exceeded this goal five-fold, securing commitments from 1,500 charging stations. Now in Phase 2, the EV Make-Ready Team at National Grid is tasked with installing 16,000 charging ports by 2025. The ports will offer Level 2 and DCFC Fast Charging at public destinations, workplaces, retail shops, and multifamily dwellings as well as support fleet charging. Once completed, these charging stations will significantly reduce, if not eliminate, range concerns. It will provide EV drivers and fleet operators with access to charging facilities, thus making current and future EV adoption possible across the socio-economic spectrum.
In addition, National Grid has launched its Fleet Advisory Services Program. This program performs fleet assessments across New York State to support commercial customers electrifying their fleets. The assessments help inform light, medium, and heavy-duty fleet operators about the benefits of fleet electrification. Cost breakdowns and a site feasibility analysis are provided to help fleet operators understand their options for converting to electric vehicles. Fleet assessments are available to municipalities, transportation and logistics companies, private commercial customers, as well as school districts. National Grid is also supporting the transit authorities in Buffalo and Albany to help electrify buses. Electrifying buses improves access to clean transportation for disadvantaged and vulnerable communities and supports healthier neighborhoods.
Finally, National Grid is testing a Medium and Heavy-Duty Vehicle Pilot program that provides charging infrastructure funding to eligible fleets that operate in New York’s disadvantaged communities to create an equitable and impactful transition to a greener New York. National Grid is partnering with CALSTART and the New York State Energy Research and Development Authority Truck Voucher Incentive Program to make it even easier and affordable for fleets operating in these communities to purchase and lease eligible EVs.
National Grid is focused on tackling climate change challenges and providing energy solutions. We live in the communities we serve and are committed to improving our environment by accelerating the transition toward clean transportation and a carbon-neutral future that can benefit every New Yorker. To learn more about the program, please visit: https://www.nationalgridus.com/electric-vehicle-hub/
Leslie Vishwanath is part of National Grid’s Electric Vehicle Make Ready Program Team. Leslie holds a bachelor’s degree in Policy Studies from Indiana University’s School of Public and Environmental Affairs and a master’s degree in Urban Planning from the University at Buffalo. Her background is in public program administration and she is committed to the equitable transformations of our environment by fostering sustainable growth and climate stewardship.