Electric vehicle (EV) sales are breaking records across the United States. As more EVs hit the road, it is critically important that charging infrastructure is available and accessible for drivers in all communities. Addressing the issue of charging deserts – areas where EV charging stations are scarce or non-existent – is essential to ensuring EV adoption continues to grow and all communities can benefit from the EV revolution.

The Charging and Fueling Infrastructure Discretionary Grant Program (CFI Program), created under the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law, is designed to ensure equitable public deployment of EV charging infrastructure in underserved, rural and disadvantaged communities. The CFI Program is one of more than 400 programs covered under the Justice40 Initiative that directs 40% of the overall benefits of certain federal climate investments to disadvantaged communities. The Department of Transportation awarded over $622 million in CIF grants across 22 States and Puerto Rico in its first round of funding.

The federal government continues to allocate Bipartisan Infrastructure Law funds to state and local governments for infrastructure projects and upgrades. Although the programs are still in their early stages, the investments present an opportunity to explore the progress of equitably expanding EV charging infrastructure and answer the following questions: How can state and local governments work with communities to access federal funding for EV charging infrastructure? What role does the Justice40 Initiative play in equitably deploying chargers across the United States? How is the CFI Program evaluating applications for charging infrastructure funds? What lessons can states and cities learn from CFI Program recipients?

Join World Resources Institute and Electrification Coalition on March 28, 12:30-1:30 pm ET for a conversation with speakers from the federal government, regional sustainability programs, community organizations and CFI Program recipients to examine current practices of addressing equity and environmental justice through EV charging deployment in rural and underserved communities.

Speakers include: 

  • Rachael Nealer, Deputy Director, Joint Office of Energy and Transportation, U.S. Department of Energy
  • Kameale C. Terry, Chief Executive Officer, ChargerHelp!
  • Dana Vingris, Director of Grants and Development, Sustainable Ohio Public Energy Council (SOPEC)
  • Giles Pettifor, Environmental Manager, Port of Hueneme
  • Matt Stephens-Rich, Director of Technical Services, Electrification Coalition (Panel Moderator) 
  • Carla Walker, US Director, Environmental Justice and Equity, WRI