By: Jaina Louise Winston, Writer / Follow South Jersey Community Services Intern
TRENTON, N.J. — The New Jersey Board of Public Utilities (NJBPU) recently approved an order to increase New Jersey’s electric vehicle infrastructure. The order will help the state make progress towards its clean energy promise while supporting equity and accessibility in public car charging.
The order will establish requirements for light-duty electric vehicle (EV) infrastructure and requires those using electric utilities to submit filings by 2021.
The New Jersey Energy Master Plan reports that transportation actually accounts for 42% of the state’s emissions. Underserved communities are and will continue to be heavily impacted by these emissions, and switching to EV will benefit those communities and assist Governor Phil Murphy’s aim to reach 100 percent clean energy by 2050. Gov. Murphy also wishes to reduce emissions by 80% relative to the levels in 2006. The order, issued on September 23, is pivotal for the evolution of EV in the future.
“Electrifying transportation is one of our core strategies for reducing emissions and combatting the effects of climate change,” NJBPU President Joseph L. Fiordaliso said in a press release. “But one hurdle we face in getting more drivers to make the switch to electric is range anxiety. By thoughtfully addressing the expansion of the state’s charging infrastructure, we can ease those fears and help drivers feel good about getting from A to B in an EV, all while saving money over the long run, creating green jobs, and supporting cleaner air and reduced emissions.”
By 2025, Gov. Murphy announced the state’s plan to register at least 300,000 electric vehicles in New Jersey. The Governor wants to have about 1,000 charging stations accessible to the public 24 hours a day by that time, as well.
New Jersey legislators are taking necessary steps towards reduce emissions and promote clean transportation across the state. This will be a “shared responsibility’ between EV infrastructure development and private investors. Utility companies are responsible for laying foundation of the infrastructure like the installation of EV, locations, and maintaining EV service equipment companies.
The issued order will work in coalition with the statewide, inter-agency effort to create and sustain New Jersey’ EV infrastructure Ecosystem. Through the partnership established in 2019, NJBPU will coordinate with the Department of Environmental Protection and the Economic Development Authority ultimately expanding EV in New Jersey.
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This article was produced by a Follow South Jersey news intern thanks to a grant provided by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation through the New Jersey Health Initiatives program to create hyper-local news to meet the informational and health needs of the City of Bridgeton, N.J.