President Biden Visits Detroit, Touts Electric Vehicle Infrastructure
President Joe Biden visited the North American International Auto Show Wednesday to tour the show and highlight the future of electric vehicles and infrastructure. He announced funding for 35 states to expand their charging station supply, including Michigan.
Biden has made clean energy and electric vehicles a priority in his administration but to get past the novelty, and into the mainstream, a complete redesign of our transportation infrastructure is needed.
“It used to be that to buy an electric car you had to make a lot of compromises but not now thanks to American ingenuity and the American worker, it’s all changing,” said Biden.
“Oh it’s happening, we are on our way,” said Anna Stefanopoulou, a mechanical engineering professor at the University of Michigan. She drives an electric car and sees first hand the biggest hurdle.
“I am struggling, sometimes, to find chargers,” said Stefanopoulou, “To find chargers that are available and to find chargers that are operational.”
Rebates and supply chain reinforcement will bring the prohibitive price down. In the long run, electric drivers will save money when not paying for gas. Charging locations and the power grid will dictate the future of EVs.
“The Great American
Road Trip is going to be fully electrified,” said Biden, “Whether you’re driving coast-to-coast on I-10 or I-75 here in Michigan, charging stations will be as easy to find as gas stations are now.”
A lot of the funding so far set for charging stations are these kinds of setups but the most needed locations are where the car will stay for hours, like a garage.
“Most of the charging will happen in that spot,” said Stefanopoulou, “Potentially more important is workplace chargers.”
Until chargers are ubiquitous in homes and workplaces, the electric movement will take time and even slower in rural areas.