- Enel X Way, a subsidiary of Italian energy company Enel, is planning to bring 10,000 public electric vehicle fast chargers to North America over the next seven years, according to a report from The Wall Street Journal.
- The company also expects to apply for U.S. government subsidies for this buildout. Under President Joe Biden’s administration, the U.S. has put increasing amounts of money toward fast-charging infrastructure.
- This announcement comes less than two weeks after big-box behemoth Walmart announced it would expand its EV charging network from a current 280 locations to “thousands” of Sam’s Clubs and Walmart Supercenters and Neighborhood Markets.
As convenience stores debate the merits of adding EV charging on premise, other industries, from restaurants to malls to hotels, have begun adding EV charging, giving drivers increasing options as to where and how to power their wheels.
Its goal for the 10,000 public fast chargers is part of a larger plan to deploy 2 million EV chargers across home, public and commercial charging segments in North America by 2030.
Enel is not the first utility getting into the EV charging game. Notably, the National Electric Highway Coalition, a group of more than 60 utilities across the U.S., was formed to address growing EV charging needs in the nation.
But a report by the Edison Electric Institute, whose members make up much of the National Electric Highway Coalition, suggests the U.S. may need about 180,000 fast chargers by 2030, when it expects there to be about 26.4 million EVs on the road — about 10% of the expected light-duty vehicles on the road at that point. There are currently less than 30,000 fast chargers in the U.S., with about 60% of those being Tesla Superchargers, according to Reuters.
Convenience retailers, especially larger chains, are looking to expand their EV charging infrastructure as well. While many chains only have one or two locations electrified at this point, companies like GetGo Cafe + Market and Loop Neighborhood Market have plans to expand to more stores. Pilot Co. is aiming to install 2,000 chargers at 500 locations in the coming years.