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Michigan awards $1.7 million in grants to expand electric vehicle charging network across the state

Drivers of electric vehicles will have more locations to recharge their vehicle’s batteries as they travel across Michigan because of $1.7 million in grants awarded by the Michigan Department of Environment, Great Lakes, and Energy (EGLE).

The EGLE made the funding available for direct current fast chargers located along well-traveled routes. It says this will “make it more convenient for drivers to reach their destinations”.

EGLE says it is committed to the future of mobility through investment in infrastructure that is needed to support EVs and it has identified “optimal charger locations” across Michigan.

The EGLE Charge Up Michigan Program grants will partially fund 36 EV DC fast charging stations with a total of 76 plug-in points for automobiles and light-utility vehicles.

Charging stations recently came online in Marshall, Big Rapids, Gaylord and Cadillac (photo at left of chargers at J&H Family Stores on Division Street courtesy of Consumers Energy). Others will be operational later this year.

Michigan Governor Gretchen Whitmer says: “Michigan is known for building America’s cars, and this commitment to future mobility infrastructure continues to keep us at the forefront of needed automotive innovation.

“With partnerships like this between government and private industry, we will take actions that will have a positive and lasting environmental impact while improving transportation infrastructure.”

EGLE director Liesl Clark says: “These grants show a commitment by EGLE, private businesses and Michigan utilities to expand the availability of electric vehicle chargers across the state and facilitate EV adoption among Michigan drivers.

“This is a significant step toward an electrified transportation future that will keep Michigan in the forefront of cutting-edge mobility and writes another chapter in the state’s storied history of innovation in the transportation industry.”

Public or private entities can apply for EGLE grants of up to $70,000 per charger station. The funding is to be used toward the cost of a DC fast charging station, including site preparation, equipment installation, networking fees and signage.

Under the program, EGLE, the host site owner and the electric utility that serves the site will each pay for about a third of the cost to install the DC fast charger – the fastest of three options to charge a vehicle battery.

The EGLE grants come from the more than $9.7 million allocated to Michigan from the Volkswagen diesel emissions settlement.

The total amount so far awarded by EGLE to 24 grantees is almost $1.7 million. However, grants worth up to $70,000 per charger station location are still available and applications must be submitted online.

For further information, contact the Environmental Assistance Center at 800-662-9278 or check the Office of Climate and Energy webpage.

Trevor Pawl, chief mobility officer with the State of Michigan’s new Office of Future Mobility and Electrification, says: “EVs are expected to represent 33 percent of new vehicle sales by 2025, and 51 percent by 2030.

“EGLE’s investment in DC fast charging shows that Michigan is committed to remaining on the leading edge of EV growth globally. The Governor’s new Office of Future Mobility and Electrification will work with EGLE to build on the momentum this program has created.”

The Michigan Economic Development Corporation’s Office of Future Mobility and Electrification was created by Governor Whitmer to address the challenges and opportunities that accompany the future of mobility.

EGLE previously allocated $4.2 million from the Fuel Transformation Program to pay up to 70 percent of the costs associated with buying 17 zero-emission buses as well as Level 2 and DC fast charging stations in seven school districts.

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