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California NEVI Program – All You Need To Know

May 12, 2024

The California Department of Transportation (Caltrans) and California Energy Commission (CEC) have continued coordinating closely on the implementation of the federal National Electric Vehicle Infrastructure (NEVI) Formula Program since releasing California’s initial EV charging deployment plan last year.

California FY 2024 Approved Plan

In July 2023, the two agencies finalized an Interagency Agreement outlining their roles and responsibilities for administering the multi-year $184 million in federal funds that California expects to receive. The agreement designates the CEC as the lead agency for allocating funds and administering the charging infrastructure solicitations and projects. Caltrans will oversee federal compliance and reporting requirements.

EV Charging Infrastructure Deployment

See the Plan Vision and Goals Section for a description of California’s overarching strategy for EV charging infrastructure installations.

Planned Charging Stations

As shown in Table 9, California is making good progress in funding and deploying light- duty charging stations; over 18,000 DC fast chargers have been installed or financed to date. However, over 19,000 new DC fast chargers are needed to support the 2030 target of 8 million ZEVs. The $384 million in funding from the NEVI Formula Program will be critical to financing the stations and chargers needed to achieve the 2030 goal.

Presently, the match requirement in most of the CEC’s funding programs for DCFCs is 50 percent. At a macro level, more than half of the state’s chargers for light-duty vehicles were funded solely with private capital. For public sector spending, the CEC, Caltrans, and DGS combined to fund 10 percent of the operational chargers. Utilities account for nearly 30 percent of light-duty charging infrastructure funding, with settlement funds from VW and NRG accounting for another 5 percent.

Table 9-Status of Chargers Needed to Support 2030 Light-Duty ZEV Targets
Table 9-Status of Chargers Needed to Support 2030 Light-Duty ZEV Targets

The CEC and Caltrans also actively engage other state partners. They work with the California State Transportation Agency and California Air Resources Board on zero-emission vehicle policies and programs. Consultation with the California Public Utilities Commission ensures coordination on electric grid planning and upgrades.

Targeted outreach also occurs. The agencies receive input from the legislatively-established Disadvantaged Communities Advisory Group and present to the group on NEVI plans and project proposals. Through the CEC’s tribal affairs office and Caltrans’ Native American Advisory Committee, they conduct government-to-government consultation with California’s 109 Native American tribes.

Three public workshops have been held so far to provide updates on NEVI coordination, new online tools to support applicants, and receive stakeholder feedback. A fourth is planned after the initial NEVI funding solicitation expected later this year. Workshop comments have informed the agencies’ equitable focus, including recommendations to prioritize medium- and heavy-duty vehicle charging.

As California’s NEVI program ramps up, strengthened collaboration across state authorities and continuous engagement with disadvantaged communities and tribes will help maximize the impact of these critical federal dollars for developing a nationwide EV charging network.

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