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AEP Partners With Five Utilities on Electric Vehicle Charging Corridor

by on March 4, 2021

On March 2, AEP, in partnership with five major utilities, announced plans for the Electric Highway Coalition. The plan will ensure that electric vehicle (EV) drivers have access to a corridor of charging stations across several regions in the U.S.

AEP, Dominion Energy, Duke Energy, Entergy Corp., Southern Co., and the Tennessee Valley Authority (TVA) announced the plans to provide EV drivers with access to EV DC Fast Chargers along frequently traveled interstate roads. Each company will provide EV charging solutions within their service territories, as part of an unprecedented effort to create convenient travel solutions for electric drivers.

“Adoption of electric vehicles and the transformation of the nation’s transportation system is underway, and it is essential that AEP is a meaningful and active part of this transformation. Being a part of the Electric Highway Coalition is a foundational component of that engagement,” said Lisa Barton, executive vice president and chief operating officer. “This effort is very timely given the recent electric vehicle announcements from leading auto manufacturers and the need to address long distance travel for our EV customers. I am proud of AEP’s leadership in this area and our ability to coordinate with five other major utilities in such a short period of time.”

Each station will be equipped to charge EVs in approximately 20 to 30 minutes. For added convenience, these stations will be strategically positioned along major highway routes, as a direct result of collaboration amongst the partnering companies, and leveraging existing and planned compatible DC Fast charging stations.

AEP employees will also benefit from the corridor, as the company has committed to electrifying 40% of its total fleet and all of its light duty models by 2030. This corridor will provide employees with necessary access to charging stations, allowing them to use EVs to travel across AEP’s service territory.

To solidify this partnership, each utility agreed to a specific set of principles that allows for ongoing collaboration between the companies and prioritizes the needs of EV drivers.

“We saw the opportunity to address a concern of some customers around purchasing electric vehicles, namely range anxiety, and the future charging needs of our own electric vehicle fleet in our service territories,” said Phil Dion, vice president and interim chief customer officer. “Last fall, our senior management team agreed and recognized that this proposal could be improved if we could partner with neighboring utilities to create an electric vehicle corridor for our customers. I am very proud of how the team, led by Jeff Lehman and the OpCo EV leads, took a concept and quickly turned it into something that will greatly benefit our customers. “

Charles Patton, executive vice president, External Affairs, shared that the partnership speaks to AEP’s ability to create solutions for customers and how the corridor will make choosing EVs more feasible for customers.

“This corridor will have significant benefits for our customers, our company and our communities,” Patton said. “It shows how AEP can collaborate with others to address one of the key barriers that prevents customers from purchasing an electric vehicle.”

Millions of drivers will soon have access to the corridor, with initial site deployment scheduled for the third quarter of 2021.

For more information see the news release on AEP.com.

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