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Electric TrucksNewsTrucking Regulation

Lawmaker proposes billions in grants for truck charging stations

No Exhaust Act authorizes over $70 billion to electrify vehicle grid

President Joe Biden’s push to electrify the U.S. transportation sector is providing a platform for legislation that offers billions of dollars in grants and rebates for truck charging stations.

The New Opportunities to Expand Healthy Air Using Sustainable Transportation (No Exhaust) Act, introduced on Tuesday, authorizes more than $7 billion per year in grants and rebates over the next decade for states to install electric vehicle networks for cars and trucks.

“Any serious efforts to address the climate crisis must include a focus on transforming our transportation system,” said Rep. Bobby Rush, D-Ill., in introducing the bill. The legislation “will drastically reduce transportation emissions and bring us closer to the target of net-zero emissions by 2050” supported by the Biden administration, Rush said.

Rush introduced similar legislation in January 2020 that failed to move. But with the change in administration and Biden’s plan for 500,000 electric charging stations in his infrastructure package, Rush’s proposal is likely to gain more traction. 

The 2021 legislation authorizes the following in grants to state and local governments and private entities for fiscal years 2022 through 2031:

  • $2 billion per year for the deployment of electric vehicle charging equipment.
  • $2.5 billion per year for large-scale projects to electrify the transportation sector.
  • $2.5 billion per year to accelerate the domestic manufacturing of electric vehicles.
  • $100 million per year for a program providing rebates to eligible entities that install publicly accessible electric vehicle supply equipment.
  • $96 million per year for the deployment of electric vehicles in disadvantaged and underserved communities.

The bill’s language provides for installing electric vehicle supply equipment for recharging plug-in electric drive vehicles, “including such equipment that is accessible in rural and urban areas and in underserved or disadvantaged communities and such equipment for medium- and heavy-duty vehicles, including at depots and in-route locations.”

Also qualifying for grants would be heavy-duty vehicle smart charging management and refueling and battery recycling and secondary use for heavy-duty vehicles, according to the legislation.

The bill would also require a challenge assessment for expanding electric vehicle access to underserved and disadvantaged communities, including the number of existing and planned Level 2 charging stations and DC FAST charging stations for commercial fleets and for heavy-duty electric vehicles.

Click for more FreightWaves articles by John Gallagher.

John Gallagher, Washington Correspondent

Based in Washington, D.C., John specializes in regulation and legislation affecting all sectors of freight transportation. He has covered rail, trucking and maritime issues since 1993 for a variety of publications based in the U.S. and the U.K. John began business reporting in 1993 at Broadcasting & Cable Magazine. He graduated from Florida State University majoring in English and business.

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