Cal Agency Gives the OK for First $200 Million of $800 Million
For EV Charging in California by VW’s Electrify America Unit
Volkswagen got the go-ahead from California yesterday to invest $200 million on electric vehicle charging infrastructure in the state. The automaker’s Electrify America unit will place high-speed chargers along highways, invest in EVSE/electric vehicle supply equipment in disadvantaged communities, and promote electric transportation through outreach and a new “Green City” initiative.
Sacramento is to be the first of the Green Cities, with EV chargers there followed by Fresno, Los Angeles, San Francisco, San Jose, and San Diego. EVSE is be placed in “community locations, multi-family dwellings, commercial and retail locations, workplaces and municipal parking lots and garages,” says the California Air Resources Board.
Electrify America has pledged to establish a network of more than 2,500 EV chargers at more than 450 EVSE sites nationally during the first phase, with about 240 of them in 38 states other than California.
The company has “discussed partnerships and interoperability” with EVSE providers including EVgo, Greenlots and SemaConnect.
$800 Million over Ten Years in California
So-called “Cycle 1” for California is the “first of four plans by VW to invest $800 million over ten years in zero-emission vehicle (ZEV) infrastructure, public outreach, and access to these ultra-clean vehicles for residents of disadvantaged communities,” states yesterday’s CARB release.
The $2 billion EVSE investment comes in the wake of Volkswagen’s installation of software, beginning in 2009, to mislead regulators on the emissions of its diesel vehicles.
That software, CARB says, caused VW’s “2009-2016 diesel passenger cars to spew up to 40 times the allowed amount of nitrogen oxide (NOx) into the atmosphere.”
“The tenacious efforts of CARB technicians forced the company to admit the use of the so-called ‘defeat device’ in those cars in 2015,” the agency said yesterday. “VW has paid out more than $15 billion in claims and penalties for using those defeat devices,” CARB said.
“This ZEV investment is one of multiple pieces to mitigate the environmental harm caused by VW’s actions.”
“Volkswagen can now move forward with its ambitious plan to help bring electric vehicle technology to corners of California ignored in earlier efforts,” said CARB chair Mary Nichols.
Settlement with California and the Feds
“This will help the state as a whole,” she said, “and especially some of our disadvantaged and underserved communities, to shift to the cleanest vehicles on the market.”
CARB noted too that the $800 million ZEV investment commitment for California is part of an agreement by Volkswagen with CARB, the U.S. EPA, and the California and U.S. Departments of Justice “that combines mitigation and penalties to fully resolve all of the environmental harm from VW’s actions.”
Among the planned Cycle 1 outlays for California EVSE are
• $75 million for highway fast-charging (implanting chargers up to 350 kilowatts);
• $45 million for “community charging,” including multi-family feelings and workplaces;
• $44 million for Green City initiatives; and
• $20 million for public education and EV awareness.
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Source: CARB with Fleets & Fuels follow-up