The future of transportation? It’s electric!
It is expected that over the next three to five years, the number of Electric Vehicles (EVs) across the U.S. will double. With the new Bipartisan Infrastructure Law in place, the U.S. is turning their attention to expanding the national network of Electric Vehicle Infrastructure (NEVI) to support a net zero-emission future.
states were required to develop plans to address this issue, and deploy charging stations every 50 miles. The federal government has designated $5 billion in funding to help build the charging networks and has reviewed and approved all state plans.
The plans present many new challenges, especially in regions with a high percentage of urban or rural areas.
Understanding Electric Vehicle Infrastructure
A broad, widely available, and reliable electric vehicle infrastructure is essential to growing
EV sales, and transforming “range anxiety” into “range confidence”. There are many challenges to building that reliable future, and some key elements to consider include:
The Power Grid
Without a reliable power grid, signiﬁcant adoption of electric vehicles is not possible. Luckily, the power grid that already provides electricity to our homes and businesses is being adapted to accommodate the increased demand of EV power consumption.
For those in more remote areas, distributed energy solutions such as local microgrids are being improved
upon and developed to install the necessary infrastructure. Battery storage technology is constantly improving and is in play on charging options in rural areas.
Electric Vehicle Charging Stations
With more than 161,000 miles of highway in the U.S., creating a true nationwide network of EV charging stations is extremely complicated. Stanley Consultants is actively helping to build this network, oﬀering a comprehensive portfolio of turnkey services
to help plan, promote, implement, and grow complete end-to-end EV charging programs for cities, institutions and businesses.
Electric Vehicle Batteries
The majority of EVs currently on the road utilize lithium-ion batteries thanks to high energy-per-unit mass relative to other electrical energy storage systems, the batteries that power these vehicles continue to be reﬁned, so they have a longer lifespan
and provide more mileage with every charge. Ultimately these developments will help reduce both costs and waste. The U.S. government is actively assessing supply chain concerns and looking to increase domestic manufacturing of batteries and components.
The Road Ahead
While great strides have been made in developing EVs, along with their batteries and the charging stations that support them; achieving a national charging network and building this infrastructure is no easy task. There are many factors to consider:
State by State Regulations
Unique state DOT regulations can often create mandates with different elements and levels of accountability. Federal government regulations will require unique solutions depending on existing transportation infrastructure.
We collaborate with investors and owners to minimize climate risk, reduce cost of ownership on long-term sustainable infrastructure investments and maximize equity return. We build confidence by providing actionable results that protect communities
against environmental impacts and improve asset performance and reliability.
We recently acquired Resilient Analytics, a high-profile climate science company, that builds models with terabytes of climate data. The results have helped
our clients understand specific asset climate vulnerabilities, mitigate risk, and optimize operations and financial planning.
New, Fast Technology
Rapidly changing technology is creating the need for innovation in both the transportation and energy sectors. Intelligent asset management will help create efficiencies in these areas and EVI projects will need careful attention and craftily designed solutions.
Companies like NASA and other private entities are developing ways to reduce charging times, while others are now looking at logistics behind the roadways and exits for charging stations; along with how we can deliver power to them effectively.
While regulations are beginning to impact technology standards, various models of EVs (and the charging stations they use) have different requirements to be considered. As the number of options increases, this will only be tougher to navigate.
Rural and urban areas have different social impacts to navigate. Some areas may have local businesses and stakeholders with different objectives or requirements. Whether it’s accommodating additional charging stations in an already
dense city; or finding new ways to deliver consistent power to a remote community; innovation is essential in achieving a successful EV network.
What happens when everyone decides to charge their vehicle at night, while they sleep? Power grids are now facing new spike periods and facing the potential for overloads. Microgrids and other renewable solutions will need to be considered
to meet these new factors. Energy companies and state transportation agencies will be collaborating in new ways.
Connect With Stanley Consultants
For more than 100 years, Stanley Consultants has been driven by the purpose of improving lives. As the impacts of global climate change become more prevalent in our everyday lives, we understand the importance of ﬁnding more sustainable and renewable energy solutions to meet our transportation needs.
If you would like to learn more about the work Stanley Consultants is doing to develop Electric Vehicle Infrastructure, please connect with us
today and get the conversation started.