Six major utilities, namely Entergy Corporation of New Orleans and American Electric Power (AEP) of Columbus, Ohio, unveiled a plan on March 2 that will enable electric vehicle drivers to travel seamlessly through major regions of the country using a system of the direct current fast chargers. According to a press release, this unprecedented initiative would provide electric vehicle drivers with charging options through several utilities’ service territories, allowing them to ride without interruption.
Duke Energy, Entergy, AEP, Dominion Energy, Southern Co., and Tennessee Valley Authority make up the Electric Highway Coalition. The plan is expected to provide electric vehicle drivers with a comprehensive network of charging stations that link major highway networks from the Atlantic Coast to the Midwest and South, as well as the Gulf Coast as well as Central Plains. Within their service territories, the companies are taking measures to include electric vehicle charging stations.
Entergy Arkansas officials will consult with state agencies in the coming weeks to decide where the stations will be located, which is anticipated to be mostly along Interstate 40 and I-30, according to Entergy Arkansas spokesperson Brandi Hinkle. The utility, based in Little Rock, plans to build 10 to 12 stations, each with several ports by the end of June, site selection should be complete, and all facilities should be finished by the completion of the year. The form of the charger has yet to be decided, according to Hinkle, but it will most probably be a level 3 direct current quick charger capable of charging a car for 120 miles in 30 minutes. A drained battery could be recharged in around an hour using a level 3 charger in a recent Chevrolet Bolt electric vehicle, which has a 259-mile range.
As per the Edison Electric Institute, 18 million electric cars will be on American roads by 2030. The simplicity of low-cost home charging is one of the advantages of driving an electric car, but some people are worried about the availability of the charging stations throughout the long road trips, according to the release. Customers can see that electric cars are “a smart option for driving around the town as well as commuting long distances,” according to efforts like those of the Electric Highway Coalition. “This initiative will allow long-distance electric travel by providing drivers with reliable, safe, as well as convenient charging options.”