State spending is driving the expansion — even during the pandemic — thanks in part to tens of millions of dollars in criminal and civil penalties from automaker Volkswagen caught cheating on environmental tests.
Republican Gov. Ron DeSantis announced $8.5 million for new fast electric charging stations along Interstates 75, 4 and 95 earlier this month. The stations, to be built this summer, will span more than 1,200 miles and increase the number of publicly accessible fast chargers in Florida by more than 50%.
The new spending comes on top of a law DeSantis signed last month laying the groundwork for charging stations at every service plaza on Florida’s toll turnpike, which should be completed by September.
“All this work will mean electric car owners will not have to worry about where they will be able to charge their car when using our major highways,” DeSantis said.
But will the next generation of clean cars and trucks drive past Florida’s poorest neighborhoods or minority communities? It’s unclear whether or when charging stations will be built in impoverished rural or urban areas.
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July 24, 2020