At 114 per 100,000 people, Vermont had the highest per capita concentration of EV chargers (plugs, not necessarily charging stations) in the U.S.
Below, Washington D.C. at 81 and California, 72, are a distant second and third:
However, a new study tells us that where you locate the chargers matters the most.
The Best Locations for EV Chargers
A group of MIT scholars believe that range anxiety is stopping many of us from buying an EV. To solve the problem, they observed the driving patterns of 334 vehicles in the Seattle area.
During the day we drive and we park at home, at work, and at public locations:
At each place, EV owners would need a dependable charging location. In residential areas, overnight public parking should have chargers. However, the diminished battery capacity of lower cost vehicles was a consideration. Just 12 percent of the cars in the Seattle data met their energy needs from home charging. That meant using work charging stations and having high speed highway charging capability. As for “ubiquitous” public parking chargers, they said it would be too expensive. Then, beyond everyday driving, people had “high energy days” (perhaps a holiday vacation) that a supply of supplementary vehicles could satisfy.
You can see that the amount of electric vehicle supply equipment (EVSE includes chargers) has steadily climbed. Meanwhile, the number of charging stations doubled between 2015 and 2019:
Our Bottom Line: Friction
In physics, friction slows the movement of a sliding object. In economics, it can diminish demand.
When a task is easy, we do it automatically, thinking little, acting immediately. Otherwise just contemplating the action creates some friction. With powering an EV, the goal is to minimize the friction by optimally locating charging stations. When charging becomes easy, we will buy more electric cars. But it will also depend on a slew of incentives that range from tax breaks to electricity rates.
Although Vermont was #1 in per capita concentration of EV chargers, it is far behind California for sales penetration:
My sources and more: It’s always nice when two sources of information converge. Yesterday, I checked some of my DOE Facts of the Week and to my delight found charger concentrations. Having just read the MIT report and PR summary on optimal charger locations, I had my synergy. This NREL (National Renewable Energy Laboratory) report also came in handy.