Drive Electric Florida (DEFL) hailed Gov. Ron DeSantis’ announcement today awarding the first grants to establish a network of fast charging electric vehicle stations along Florida’s major evacuation corridors, the continuation of more robust electric vehicle charging infrastructure across the state.
Drive Electric Florida, one of the most visible and effective voices for electric vehicle ownership and accompanying infrastructure growth, said these new fast-charging stations will significantly expand the ability of Floridians to use electric vehicles as they travel throughout the state. The organization praised the governor’s use of the first phase of funds from the Volkswagen Settlement – which resulted from excessive diesel emissions that violated the Clean Air Act – to advance Florida’s ability to utilize clean electric vehicle technology.
“It’s clear that more and more of Florida’s residents and visitors are choosing to embrace the countless benefits of driving electric vehicles,” said Matt Alford, Executive Director of Drive Electric Florida. “By initiating these new fast-charging stations, Governor DeSantis is taking a major step toward greater security for all Floridians – energy security, economic security, and environmental security.”
The governor’s announcement releases funds from Florida’s $166 million share of two related nationwide Volkswagen Settlements, reached in 2016 and 2017 when the automaker resolved claims that it had installed “defeat devices” that enabled certain vehicles to pass emissions test even though they didn’t meet limits during regular use.
The first phase of funds were designated for approximately 27 fast charging stations near I-95, I-295, I-75, I-275, and I-4.
Florida’s transportation sector represents the state’s single largest contributor to greenhouse gas emissions, a key issue for Florida’s future. Expansion of the state’s charging station infrastructure will pave the way for electric vehicle growth, which can contribute to reduced emissions. Gov. DeSantis last month signed SB 7018, which requires the state to create a master plan for the development of electric vehicle charging infrastructure across Florida.
Florida currently has more than 4,000 electric vehicle charging stations, but many areas have no such stations. Motorist concerns that they won’t be able to find a station when then need to recharge have created a challenge for the expansion of electric vehicle usage.
Learn more at www.driveelectricflorida.org.