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The Biden administration is marching forward with plans to build a network of publicly funded charging stations for electric vehicles. Tesla CEO Elon Musk reminded President Joe Biden that his company has been at the forefront of that fight.
Biden took to Twitter to boast about what he claims his administration has been planning, writing: “We’re building 500,000 electric vehicle charging stations across the country. The great American road trip will be fully electrified.”
According to a news release from the Department of Transportation, “The Biden-Harris Administration today announced it has approved Electric Vehicle Infrastructure Deployment Plans for all 50 States, the District of Columbia and Puerto Rico ahead of schedule under the National Electric Vehicle Infrastructure (NEVI) Formula Program, established and funded by President Biden’s Bipartisan Infrastructure Law. With this approval, all states now have access to all FY22 and FY23 NEVI formula funding, totaling more than $1.5 billion to help build EV chargers covering approximately 75,000 miles of highway across the country. The NEVI formula funding under the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law, which makes $5 billion available over five years, will help build a convenient, reliable, and affordable EV charging network across the country. President Biden’s commitment to making electric vehicles and EV charging accessible to all Americans is critical to fighting the climate crisis and is generating an electric vehicle manufacturing boom across the country.”
Musk, whose Tesla charging network is already completed, immediately fired back at Biden: “Or you can just buy a Tesla.”
Or you can just buy a Tesla
— Elon Musk (@elonmusk) December 4, 2022
“America led the original automotive revolution in the last century, and today, thanks to the historic resources in the President’s Bipartisan Infrastructure Law, we’re poised to lead in the 21st century with electric vehicles,” said U.S. Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg. “We have approved plans for all 50 States, Puerto Rico and the District of Columbia to help ensure that Americans in every part of the country – from the largest cities to the most rural communities—can be positioned to unlock the savings and benefits of electric vehicles.”
“Every single state, D.C. and Puerto Rico are working to leverage the investments from the President’s Bipartisan Infrastructure Law to expand domestic electric vehicle charging across America,” said U.S. Secretary of Energy Jennifer M. Granholm. “President Biden is leading the shift to electrify transportation—ensuring drivers can commute and charge confidently and affordably, and lessening our oversized reliance on fossil fuels while combatting climate change.”
“With this greenlight, States, the District of Columbia and Puerto Rico can ramp up their work to build out EV charging networks that will make driving an EV more convenient and affordable for their residents and will serve as the backbone of our national EV charging network,” said Acting Federal Highway Administrator Stephanie Pollack. “The Federal Highway Administration will continue to work closely with States as we implement this historic funding under the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law to bring President Biden’s vision for a national electric vehicle network to communities across America.”
While the Biden administration is talking about what they want to accomplish, Musk has already been there and done that.
As noted by CNN, Tesla currently has the largest network of chargers in North America and has recently tried to encourage other makers of electric vehicles to make their vehicles compatible with Musk’s Tesla network.
“Tesla chargers outnumber so-called CCS chargers, the sort used by Ford, General Motors, Audi, Rivian, and others, by a factor of two to one, according to Tesla. Now, Tesla has invited other automakers to build cars with charging ports that can work with Tesla’s charging format and for other charging companies, like EVGo, ChargePoint, and Electrify America, to add Tesla-style plugs to their chargers,” CNN reported.
“We created our own connector, as there was no standard back then & Tesla was only maker of long range electric cars. That said, we’re making our Supercharger network open to all other EVs,” Musk wrote in a July tweet.
Kentucky Republican Rep. Thomas Massie took to Twitter to criticize the Biden administration for planning to build a network when one already exists.
“The government should not be in the business of building electric car charging stations. Tesla already has a nationwide network of privately financed, owned, and maintained charging stations that allow you to drive a Tesla virtually anywhere in the United States,” he tweeted.
The government should not be in the business of building electric car charging stations.
Tesla already has a nationwide network of privately financed, owned, and maintained charging stations that allow you to drive a Tesla virtually anywhere in the United States. pic.twitter.com/jP6uIavPgi
— Thomas Massie (@RepThomasMassie) December 4, 2022
In April, after Musk met with Biden officials to discuss the future of charging stations, the Department of Transportation said in a statement that there was “broad consensus that charging stations and vehicles need to be interoperable and provide a seamless user experience, no matter what car you drive or where you charge your EV.”