Florida’s Turnpike plazas will be getting fast charging stations, as the state recently introduced its mitigation plan from its share of the Volkswagen Dieselgate settlement.
All eight Florida Turnpike service plazas will see installation begin on fast charging stations by the end of the year, Governor Ron DeSantis said. Each plaza will have three fast charging stations.
DeSantis spoke more about the push to install EV infrastructure in the state. From the Orlando Sentinel:
When you look at electrical vehicles, part of the issue is they have not been terribly affordable for a lot of middle income folks. [But] they’re becoming more affordable. … It’s amazing how much cheaper it is to just charge a vehicle than to fill up a gas tank. And so as technology evolves, we hope that that’ll be reflected in people’s pocketbooks. So we want to make sure we have the infrastructure in place to make that a reality.
Florida also looks to install similar charging stations across all of its major highways, off major interstate exits, so it feels no different than stopping for gas, DeSantis said.
The state is getting $166 million from its share of the Volkswagen Dieselgate emissions settlement. Of that amount, 15% was designated for charging infrastructure — about $25 million.
Additionally, the state just released its Beneficiary Mitigation Plan to be used with the settlement money. The plan reveals the results of a public survey used to develop the plan.
The two most popular responses for project funding were buses (school, shuttle, and transit), and EV charging stations. The charging infrastructure has been announced, but the plan reveals a number of considerations for buses.
Old diesel school and transit buses could be replaced with electric or new diesel replacements. Because new diesel buses are less expensive, the analysis shows the nitrogen oxide emissions benefit in Tons Per Year would be greater when ordering new diesel buses, as opposed to electric.
That’s exactly the kind of thing US PIRG warned about earlier this year when analyzing state plans — money going back toward new diesel buses. (The organization gave Florida an “F,” but really, it was an incomplete grade, because the plan has just now been released.)
Interestingly, 39% of the survey respondents said they planned to buy a plug-in EV in the next five years. Of the more than 2,000 respondents, 28.5% said they weren’t sure if they’d get an EV in that time, and just 18.6% said they would not. About 14% of the respondents already owned or leased an EV.
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