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Study Provides Map for Switch to Electric Cars

A study says the state will need up to five fast-charging stations for every 1,000 electric cars. (GuillermoMemo/Pixabay)
A study says the state will need up to five fast-charging stations for every 1,000 electric cars. (GuillermoMemo/Pixabay)
February 21, 2018

BOSTON – The Bay State is planning on having 300,000 electric vehicles on the road by 2025, and a new study outlines how to keep them charged.

Right now, there are about 13,000 electric cars in the state.

Nationally, sales of electric cars have gone up more than 30 percent in the past two years so that number is on track to grow rapidly.

According to Matt Casale, staff attorney for the MASSPIRG Education Fund, that means the state is going to need as many as five fast-charging stations for every 1,000 of those vehicles.

"It's really important that we start preparing for that now, because if we don't start now, suddenly we're going to have more electric vehicles than we have the infrastructure for," he stresses.

MASSPIRG has joined with Environment Massachusetts and the Frontier Group in producing a study of how other locations are meeting electric vehicle infrastructure needs.

The infrastructure problem could be especially serious in urban areas where residents park on public streets.

Casale says cities could install charging stations at streetlights, encourage electric vehicle ride-sharing services and electrify public transportation.

"Electrifying our buses can be a big step towards transitioning to a transportation system where we have a lot fewer harmful emissions," he points out.

On highways, charging stations would gradually replace gas pumps.

Who would pay for all this infrastructure? Casale points to Volkswagen's settlement of a lawsuit for years of cheating on emission tests of its diesel cars.

"From that settlement, $75 million is coming to Massachusetts. Massachusetts can use a big chunk of that money to purchase and install electric vehicle infrastructure."

The full report is available online at

Andrea Sears, Public News Service - MA