Transportation Electrification (TE) offers numerous opportunities for communities and TE-related companies. Government agencies and utilities are deploying electrification incentive programs to encourage customers to adopt electric vehicles. TE is a key priority for many states and a critical path to the fight against climate change. However, not all stakeholders are equally positioned to participate in TE programs and realize these opportunities. To address these inequities, ILLUME Advising LLC released a whitepaper that identifies barriers to equitable TE and recommends strategies to unlock electric vehicle (EV) access in Black and Brown Communities. The paper draws on an in-depth case study of the Black-owned electric vehicle supply equipment (EVSE) company, KIGT, and its efforts to invest in communities in South Los Angeles. “If no one is paying attention to how we implement strategies for electrifying transportation, then millions of people will be left out. Electrification, equity, and empowerment are wealth-building tools for creating an inclusive economy for Black and Brown communities. ILLUME’s whitepaper illustrates what is happening in the market and identifies viable solutions.” Paul Francis, KIGT CEO. According to the paper, policymakers, regulators, and program designers must adopt the following solutions to unlock the potential for TE across all markets and communities:
- Systematically review program requirements to reduce undue burdens to emerging suppliers.
- Modify cost-benefit models to address underlying needs.
- Tailor incentives to address EV deserts and the communities impacted by them and identify partnerships to accelerate the process.
- Prioritize community-based or community-focused developers.
The whitepaper is complemented by an ArcGIS StoryMap to visualize the experience of KIGT and provide recommendations for regulators and utilities to ensure the benefits from transportation electrification transition benefit all communities. The StoryMap is available to view here. By implementing these strategies, regulators and program designers can reduce or remove barriers that disadvantage up-and-coming diverse suppliers capable of participating in programs, amend cost-benefit assessments to prioritize equitable service outcomes, prioritize projects in EV deserts, and facilitate access to incentives for diverse TE suppliers and community projects. “Transportation electrification is critical to achieving a carbon-free future, but we must ensure that all communities can participate in and benefit from the transition to electric vehicles,” said Anne Dougherty, ILLUME Co-Founder. “Our whitepaper offers actionable recommendations that will help regulators and program designers unlock the potential of TE for all markets and communities while promoting equity and sustainability. This is an important read for anyone working in electrification.” To read the full white paper, click here.
About ILLUME Advising LLC (ILLUME)
ILLUME is a wholly women-owned research and strategy consultancy specializing in the human dimensions of energy industry transformations. ILLUME operates nationwide, having served more than 50 public and investor-owned utilities, regional and state agencies, and the federal government in advancing, re-envisioning, and equitably transforming the energy industry toward cleaner programs and services. Founded in 2013, ILLUME’s team includes a deep bench of more than 40 consultants that leverage data science, social science, and technical services to provide strategic consulting and support to clients in meeting their energy and climate goals. For more information, visit www.illumeadvising.com.