The National Electric Vehicle Infrastructure Formula Program (NEVI)

December 12, 2022

The U.S. Department of Transportation and Department of Energy announced on Feb. 10 that $5 billion would be available under the National Electric Vehicle Infrastructure (NEVI) Formula Program. This program will provide funding, regulations, and guidelines for states to deploy electric vehicle (EV) charging infrastructure and establish an interconnected network to facilitate data collection, access, and reliability (Department of Transportation). This funding is made possible through the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law (BIL) and administered by the Joint Office of Energy and Transportation. Furthermore, a grant program will be established for states requiring additional assistance to strategically deploy EV charging stations.

According to the U.S. Secretary of Energy Jennifer Granholm, “The Bipartisan Infrastructure Law is helping states to make electric vehicle charging more accessible by building the necessary infrastructure for drivers across America to save money and go the distance, from coast to coast” (cspdailynews).

According to the Pennsylvania Department of Transportation, states must strategically deploy Direct Current Fast Charging stations (DCFCs) along their designated Alternative Fuel Corridors (AFCs). States' AFC networks will have to be "fully built out," meaning NEVI-compliant DCFC stations are: a) no more than 50 miles apart along each AFC; and b) no more than 1 mile from the nearest AFC exit. Once this is completed according to Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) criteria, that State may use NEVI Formula Program funds for EV charging infrastructure on any public road or other publicly accessible location. California Energy Commission said that "states are required to emphasize equity, with at least 40 percent of NEVI benefits going to disadvantaged, low-income, rural and Tribal communities" (California Energy Commission).

The Department of Energy stated that funding is available for up to 80% of eligible project costs, including the acquisition, installation, and network connection of EV charging stations. Maintenance of EV charging stations and long-term EV charging station data sharing are also included. Retail stores are an excellent place to begin filling EV charging infrastructure gaps across the nation. Drivers will be able to confidently purchase EVs knowing they can conveniently charge them along Interstates and major highways. The program will provide states with the resources to offer their residents easy access to EV charging stations while they travel.  

To receive the NEVI funds, States must submit a State EV Infrastructure Deployment Plan (Plan) to the Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) by August 1, 2022, and the Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) approved eligible Plans by September 30, 2022. According to the State of New York, their plan contained information on the State’s existing charging infrastructure, goals for the investments, how the State plans to use the funding, and how the State will monitor and evaluate the program.  

The transition from fossil fuels to electric vehicles is already underway. In Forbes' opinion, retail stores that add electric charging stations can ultimately redefine themselves. States can use this program to help retail businesses compete in the EV charging market. As more and more people are becoming eco-friendly and are buying EVs, Installing EV chargers on your premises show that your company is choosing to go green and is dedicated to sustainability. Additionally, EV customers are more likely to spend more time at your site to charge, resulting in them purchasing more products and services.  

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