Will federal infrastructure dollars make Minnesota adopt electric vehicles faster?

cars painted to promote electric vehicles
Cars promoting electric powered vehicles at an educational event about electric vehicles in Roseau on September 29, 2021
Dan Gunderson | MPR News file

Minnesota is in line to receive billions of dollars in infrastructure money from the federal bill soon to be signed by President Biden, and some of that money could go toward expanding electric vehicle infrastructure in the state.

Listen to the latest reporting on Minnesota’s share of the money, plus, host Cathy Wurzer spoke with Jon Hunter, senior director of clean air for the American Lung Association in Minnesota, to find out more about money for electric vehicle infrastructure. Overall, the bill includes about $7.5 billion for electric vehicle infrastructure. That’s less than the $15 billion the president originally sought.

Hunter said states will still be able to do a lot with the money that did pass. “It’s definitely a great start,” he said.

Hunter says the number of public charging stations in Minnesota will roughly double in the next year or two. The charging stations started on interstates but are increasingly being installed along state highways, he said.

Minnesota has about 20,000 electric vehicles registered in the state, Hunter said, and “the infrastructure I think we have is very supportive of that.”

“Most people charge up at home, if they can,” he said, but the public stations create a safety net that leaves EV owners feeling more confident.

“We definitely want to keep it on pace with the vehicles getting on the road,” he said.

Use the audio player above to listen to the full conversation.

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