GOVERNMENT

Committee working to end “range anxiety” for electric vehicle drivers

Jan 10, 2022, 8:49 AM
committee electric vehicle...
Energy advisor to Gov. Cox will head up a new committee. The committee plans to add more high-speed charging stations in Utah for electric vehicle drivers. Photo: Canva

SALT LAKE CITY — A new state committee is working to end the anxiety electric vehicle owners feel when they drive too far from a charging station.

The committee includes state tourism and utility officials as well as representatives of clean air groups. It’s chaired by Thom Carter, the energy advisor for Governor Spencer Cox.

Carter told KSL Newsradio in an interview there will be a lot of money available to states from the federal infrastructure bill passed late last year.

With those resources, a state plan developed last year called for a high-speed Level 3 charging station every fifty miles along Utah’s highways. A Level 3 system can charge a fully-electric vehicle such as a Tesla in less than an hour. Other vehicles, such as plug-in hybrids, typically require two to three hours for a full charge.

Some newer electric vehicles also have a greater range, sometimes as much as 300 to 400 miles. Carter said these updates to electric vehicles also help to ease range anxiety.

The goal, Carter told KSL NewsRadio, is to make sure visitors can reach Utah’s parks and scenic vistas without worry.

“People who want to come and spend time in places like Loa and Kanab and see our Mighty Five parks can do it from their electric vehicle,” Carter said.

We think we’re on an upward trajectory in the next couple of years, to see a significant adoption of EVs. Being strategic in how we place our infrastructure will insure a long-term ability for adoption and not just dropping infrastructure or chargers willy-nilly . . . will put us in a position for long term success.

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