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Florida Proceeds with Plans for More Electric Vehicles

The adoption of electric vehicles to substitute cars and trucks that burn fossil fuels increases in popularity across the United States. This trend is due to escalating awareness to take environmental initiatives. The US government placed stringent measures to ensure automakers perform ecological tests on all vehicles manufactured. 

Miami, Florida, plans to drastically enlarge its grid of electric vehicle charging terminals along major interstates and highways. Even during this epidemic, the state expenditure gears towards this expansion. The development funding comes from millions of dollars in criminal and civil penalties paid by Volkswagen, an automaker charged with defrauding environmental tests.

Recently, Ron DeSantis made public the release of $8.5 million for setting up new fast electric charging stations along interstates 75, 4, and 95. The plan is to build these stations this summer, and the stations are to cover more than 1,200 miles. This plan will promote the number of publicly accessible fast electric chargers within Florida by more than 50%.

Last month, DeSantis enacted a law that provided a foundation for electric charging stations at every service plaza on Florida’s traffic turnpike. These stations will be complete by September. DeSantis assured electric car owners not to worry about charging stations for their cars while using major highways. There is uncertainty about whether the project plans to establish electric charging stations within insolvent rural or urban areas.

The electric vehicle law decreed earlier this summer is part of a comprehensive scheme to encourage electric vehicles and intensifying charging stations across the states. Nikki Fried, the Democratic Agriculture Commissioner in the Florida Office of Energy, is pushing forth the scheme. There is anticipation that Fried aims to contend DeSantis while seeking reelection as governor.

Statistics from the State transportation officials indicate a projection of approximately 4.5 million electric vehicles on Florida roads by 2030. Currently, an estimate of 69,000 is under registration, according to the information from the Florida Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles. Matt Alford said that new electric vehicles’ initiative aims to benefit the environment and enhance economic development. Alford is the executive director of Drive Electric, Florida, an association supporting electric vehicle ownership. 

Florida received about $167 million under a global multi-billion criminal and civil settlement with Volkswagen. DeSantis said that the money is vital in expanding charging infrastructure along Interstate 10 in northern Florida and South and Central Florida areas. However, Terry Travis noted that electric charging stations along the highways and interstates are of no benefit to marginal communities. Travis added that it is more helpful to set up apparatus within the neighborhood to benefit people who cannot charge a vehicle overnight like in a single-family house.