New York regulators recommended utilities take the lead on building out charging infrastructure and put charging costs into their annual capital planning process in a report released Jan. 13.
The Make-Ready Program recommended by the state's Department of Public Service (DPS) would also cover up to 90% of the costs for "make-ready" charging stations, or stations with all the necessary electric infrastructure in place, to lower cost barriers for developers.
The program is expected to deliver $2.6 billion in net benefits to New Yorkers, according to the DPS. Direct current fast-charging (DCFC) stations developed in the program's first year are projected to have net positive returns, except for larger 150 kW stations.
New York's EV targets are part of its broader decarbonization goals passed by the state's Assembly in June 2019, which would bring the state to 100% carbon-free energy by 2040.
DPS' recommendations mark the latest step in New York's series of moves on electric vehicle rollouts, and follow recently signed legislation in New Jersey that aims to get 2 million EVs on the road by 2035 and invests $300 million over 10 years in customer rebates.
In New York, more than 20,000 rebates have been approved, amounting to up to $2,000 per rebate, under the 2017 Drive Clean Rebate, according to Democratic Gov. Andrew Cuomo's office. The state is investing $70 million in electric vehicle rebate incentives and outreach to reach the state's goal of 850,000 zero emissions vehicles on the road by 2025.
"Accelerating the addition of more charging stations statewide is key to the successful encouragement and support of electric car adoption in New York State," New York Power Authority President and CEO Gil Quinones said in a statement. "The Make Ready Program will further encourage the important collaboration between utilities and developers so that more charging infrastructure can be built."
The billions in net benefits include avoided maintenance and gasoline costs, federal tax credits for EV purchases and societal benefits of reduced greenhouse gas emissions, calculated by the Public Service Commission (PSC) under the DPS. The full cost of the program to utilities is not yet calculated because it will be determined through a PSC proceeding.
New York has established several other initiatives to help move the state toward its 2025 zero emission vehicle goals.
In April, Cuomo announced a program led by the New York Power Authority that aims to spur funding in EV startups and broader innovation around EVs and energy storage. The state has also committed $250 million through 2025 for the initial rollout of its EVolve New York program, which will develop 200 150 kW DCFCs in its first stages.