- The Iowa Utilities Board last week opened a rulemaking on electric vehicle (EV) infrastructure, signaling greater focus on electrified transportation in a state where interest has lagged so far.
- Iowa had less than 2,000 EVs on the road last year and lacked any sort of purchase or statewide charging incentive, according to advocacy group Plug in America.
- But Iowa's recent interest in transportation electrification puts it in good company, along with much of the country. A report from the N.C. Clean Energy Technology Center (NCCETC) last month found 36 states and the District of Columbia took actions related to EVs in the second quarter of this year.
While most states are showing interest in EVs, the NCCETC report reveals that it is not uniform. Three dozen states took a combined 274 EV-related actions, but just seven states accounted more than half of them.
Those states — New York, New Jersey, California, Hawaii, Massachusetts, Vermont and Minnesota — are moving more rapidly while others are just beginning to investigate.
While the majority of electric vehicle policy activity is occurring in particular states and regions, "many states throughout the country are beginning to study questions related to electric vehicles and address initial regulatory issues surrounding vehicle charging infrastructure," David Sarkisian, senior policy analyst at NCCETC, said in a statement.
The figure below emphasizes the gap between the types of EV policy that states are working on in the second quarter:
There are more than 3 million EVs on the road worldwide, according to estimates out earlier this year, and the United States accounted for about 750,000 of them. A 2017 report from the Edison Electric Institute and the Institute for Electric Innovation forecast 7 million on US roads by the end of 2025.
Among the major actions taken so far this year, the California Public Utilities Commission approved $738 Million for EV infrastructure between the state's three major investor-owned utilities, Pacific Gas & Electric, San Diego Gas & Electric and Southern California Edison.
Democratic New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo has announced the launch of EVolve NY, a new $250 million electric vehicle expansion initiative. And New Jersey utility PSEG has announced plans to spend $300 million on EV infrastructure as part of a multi-billion dollar clean energy and grid investment plan.
Comments in the Iowa rulemaking are due Sept. 17, and regulators will conduct a public workshop on EV infrastructure in October.