EV Charging for the Public Sector
For years, people saw mass electric vehicle (EV) adoption as the next big thing. Now it’s here. As EVs decrease in price, they’re going from status symbols for the c-suite to packing parking lots at Costco. As consumers across the country make the switch, cities need to expand EV charging infrastructure. And they need to do so quickly.
Federal, state, and local governments recognize the need for EV charging infrastructure and are investing heavily to bring it to life. Initiatives from the federal government, such as Executive Order 14057, prioritize electrifying federal fleets, while others, such as the National Electric Vehicle Infrastructure (NEVI) program, lay the groundwork for a nationwide rollout of EV charging stations. Furthermore, state and local governments across the country have spearheaded initiatives of their own.
However, while enthusiasm and energy are running high, strategic insights into the brass tax of rolling these plans out are hard to come by. By pairing EV charging and electrical contracting expertise with an emphasis on the public sector, Blue Whale EV is here to answer your questions about EV charging and give you a roadmap for success.
Whether you’re looking for EV charging for schools, cities, public fleets, or more, here are six key considerations for EV charging in the public sector:
- Identify and gather the relevant stakeholders
Because EV charging is a new initiative for many local governments, there’s a lack of standard procedures for implementation. Furthermore, by nature, EV charging projects overlap with many stakeholders. Failing to involve relevant stakeholders early in the process creates downstream headaches for everyone involved. And if you’re not sure who to involve, we can help.
- Set your goals and determine charging needs
Given the current trajectory of EV adoption, it would be difficult to overdo EV charging infrastructure. However, at the ground level, budgets don’t balance themselves, and achievable EV charging goals will look different for each organization or city. Early in the process, determine your budget and your goals. Are you looking for full fleet electrification, easy access to chargers for municipal employees at work, or charging stations for residents where they live, shop, and work? Your budget and goals will determine how many, what kind, and where to place chargers.
- Plan infrastructure and gather permits
Once you have a clear picture of your charging needs, you’ll need to begin planning their implementation. Critically, you’ll need to apply for permits, get engineer-stamped drawings, and depending on the project, you may need to complete a traffic assessment.Different goals will have different implications for infrastructure. For instance, if you want to electrify a police department’s fleet, you’ll need lots of DC Fast Chargers available 24/7 at the police department. This will likely involve needing to upgrade the electrical capacity at the location, given the high density of powerful chargers. However, if you’re looking to provide equitable access to chargers for residents throughout a county, you may only put a few level 2 chargers in several different locations, dividing the electrical load across each.
- Select a manufacturer
EV charging manufacturers are not one size fits all. Some specialize in networked, monetizable chargers, while others are better for private chargers. Likewise, some only offer level 2 or level 3 chargers, while others offer both. Furthermore, for the public sector, you’ll want to find manufacturers who are part of the SourceWell contract. This will help maximize tax-payer dollars and save you time.
- Install and ensure ongoing maintenance
With a plan in place and chargers in hand, all that remains is installing chargers and ensuring ongoing maintenance. You’ll need a certified electrician for installation. Then, you’ll want to look into procedures for ongoing maintenance. EV chargers have had well-documented up-time issues. But most of these problems are easy fixes. The real issue is failing to have a plan in place for resolving issues.At Blue Whale EV, not only do we double as general contractors for installation, but we also provide ongoing maintenance for all our clients. When a problem occurs, we’ll receive a notification, and if we can fix it remotely, we will–often noticing and fixing the problem before you even know it occurred. For problems that require onsite remedying, we’ll send a technician out to get it up and running as quickly as possible.The fast-track to EV charging success
If this looks like a lot to keep up with, that’s because it is. However, we’re here to do the heavy lifting. From planning and permitting to purchasing and putting chargers in the ground, we’ll guide you each step of the way. Together, we’ll make your EV charging goals a reality.
Want to learn more? Contact us today to set up a consultation.