A New EV Charging Plan will Bring More Options for East Texas Drivers
Its a topic that certainly has no grey area, you either absolutely love it or definitely hate it, electric vehicles. It is all the rage of car companies nowadays to introduce an all electric vehicle to go along side their gas powered standards. Even here in East Texas, we're seeing more and more electric vehicles on the roadways. With that increase in electric car drivers comes the need for more charging stations along the highways. That's where a new Texas Department of Transportation (TxDOT) plan will come into play.
TxDOT's New Program
Recently, TxDOT received approval for its Texas Electric Vehicle Infrastructure Plan. This will create a series of electric vehicle charging stations along Texas highways. For East Texas, this means we'll start seeing them pop up along Interstate 20 and in other East Texas cities. If you are an electric car driver, you can suggest where you would like a charging station to go up.
Electric Vehicle Charging in Texas
Something you probably didn't know is that Texas already has 2,574 charging locations in the state. A majority of them offer a Level 2 or Medium Charge Rate. For those that own an electric vehicle, they have a better understanding of that. I am not familiar at all with electric vehicle charging so I'm even going to attempt to try explain what this dashboard means.
Electric Vehicles in East Texas
As for East Texas, Smith County leads the way as far as registered electric vehicle owners. As of today, October 4, 2022, Smith County has 538 registered electric vehicles. Kaufman County comes in next with 511 followed by Gregg County, 205, Hunt County with 203 and then Henderson County with 124. You can few the numbers for every Texas county HERE.
Charging Stations Coming to East Texas
If you are an electric vehicle owner, you can suggest a site for a charging station. There are already some locations that have been approved across the state and in East Texas. You can see those (blue circles and green dots) below:
You can also see the suggested areas for a charging station in East Texas so far:
Main Criticism of Plan
Being that this is a federal government program, it is tax payer subsidized which is where a majority of the hesitation from residents comes from. A lot of the argument turns toward the power grid itself and how we've been hearing since snowmageddon how poorly the Texas power grid can keep up with demand. A plan like this with as many stations being planned will only put more strain on that grid. Look at California recently when it basically told their electric vehicle owners to not charge their vehicles because they couldn't keep up.
Personally, electric vehicles are fine to have. They are better for the environment and you don't have to worry about the fluctuating price of gasoline. On the other hand, however, electric vehicles are a nice supplement to gas powered vehicles but are not ready to be the main mode of transportation. The technology just isn't there yet to support everyone having an electric vehicle. Until then, we'll see more of those memes of people carrying a gas generator to charge their vehicle on the side of the road.