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Interactive Map Shows Every EV Charging Station in U.S.

A new interactive map developed by Esri identifies the locations of public electric vehicle charging stations nationwide. The map gives essential information like location and hours of operation. (1).png
The Electric Vehicle Charging Stations and U.S. Interstates map, developed by Esri.
The map comes alive with hundreds of little pinpricks of light, each yellow pixel representing an electric vehicle charging station.

The interactive map, known somewhat unceremoniously as Electric Vehicle Charging Stations and U.S. Interstates, was developed by Esri, using data from the U.S. Department of Energy Alternative Fuels Data Center. It shows every public EV charging station in the nation, as of February 2022.

This interactive data tool is of particular interest as the nation begins the process of building out a national network of EV charging stations, funded in part with $7.5 billion from the recently approved Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act. That money will flow from the federal government to the states, with the requirement that states develop an EV charging plan for major corridors and throughways, with the goal of having a charger every 50 miles.

The map illustrates a few glaring realities.

“A significant share of EV charging infrastructure exists in just a handful of states,” observed Matt Piper, global industry director for utilities and AEC for Esri.

Perhaps just as interesting for both policymakers and EV drivers is the data in the data. Click on a little yellow light, and you can access information about both the charging station and the state it’s in. For example, click on a light that seems to rest in the Mississippi countryside at Paul Barnett Nissan in Brookhaven, and you will learn when the charger was installed (2012), its hours of operation (business hours), and some fun facts about the concentration of EVs in the Magnolia State. There are a mere 780 of them, amounting for 3.78 per 1,000 people. And there are only 87 public chargers in this state of nearly three million residents.

Click here to see EV numbers for all 50 states.

Compare Mississippi's numbers to those of California, a leader in vehicle adoption and manufacturing of EVs. There are more than 425,000 EVs on California roadways, according to Esri data, and the state is home to 13,658 public chargers, which comes to 0.03 chargers for every EV.

“Generally speaking, the more electric vehicles in a state, the more EV chargers a state has,” said Piper. “States with higher total populations also tend to have more EV chargers.”

Consequently, the states with the fewest number of public chargers include Alaska (40), South Dakota (57), Wyoming and North Dakota (tied at 58), and Montana (79).

For now, the interactive map is not dynamic, and it’s not clear when or if more pinpricks of light will be added as more charging locations come online, said Esri officials.

But it could certainly look a lot brighter within five years, which is the build-out period for the federal infrastructure initiative. However, lawmakers are already debating the initiative's various policy parameters. At the recent CoMotion MIAMI conference, Jeff Brandes, a Republican state senator from Florida, criticized the EV charging component of the infrastructure law, bemoaning what he saw as “strings attached.”

Brandes would prefer the money come as a single block grant for states to use as they choose.

“It’s the strings attached,” he said speaking on a panel to discuss the future of EVs. “And the strings are still being discussed, and new strings are being added.”

For its part, the federal government is using the funding to realize certain policy goals — not an unheard of strategy by all levels of government. Which is why states are encouraged to place considerations around equity or sustainability within their EV charging plans.

Brandes also floated the idea that a change in presidential administration in three years would act as an impediment to fully realizing the build-out.

“It’s likely to happen,” said Brandes of the notion that the Democrats will not be successful in 2024. “And if that occurs, the whole perspective is going to shift. And there could be some shift in pulling back dollars."

“Obviously, states that are more red, they don’t know where they’re going to spend Biden bucks on some of these issues,” he added. “Or they’ve been hesitant to spend them because they don’t want to be seen as too far to the left. So there’s some hesitancy in this discussion.”
Skip Descant writes about smart cities, the Internet of Things, transportation and other areas. He spent more than 12 years reporting for daily newspapers in Mississippi, Arkansas, Louisiana and California. He lives in downtown Yreka, Calif.