From the mountains to the coast, every major interstate in North Carolina touches a cooperative service territory. As the number of electric vehicles (EVs) along these routes increases, co-ops are working hard to deploy charging stations and implement programs and services benefiting members who choose to drive electric.
Co-ops Invest in Rural Charging Infrastructure
It was during National Drive Electric Week back in 2019 that North Carolina’s electric cooperatives announced a $1 million investment in a rural electric vehicle charging network. Since then, cooperatives have installed more than 100 charging stations at locations across the state.
The co-op EV charging network has been instrumental in filling gaps in rural charging, making driving electric more accessible, and bringing commerce and tourism to cooperative services territories.
By expanding rural charging, cooperatives are promoting economic development, sustainability and improved quality of life in co-op communities across the state.
EV Programs and Services
A number of cooperatives offer programs and services to bring the benefits of driving electric to local members and encourage EV adoption. Programs and services available at co-ops can include special EV rates for home charging, residential charging rebates and low-interest rate loans for EVs. For commercial and industrial members, co-ops can offer support for installing workplace chargers and guidance for building EV-ready homes.
National Drive Electric Week
Many of North Carolina’s electric cooperatives will discuss these topics and more during National Drive Electric Week, which runs from Sept. 22 through Oct. 1.
From hosting events to sharing educational resources, co-ops will be connecting with members to talk about what it means to drive electric.
Here’s how a few of North Carolina’s electric cooperatives are celebrating National Drive Electric Week:
- EnergyUnited is hosting their 2nd annual Electric Vehicle Ride & Drive Event on Sept. 23 at the Career Academy and Technical School in Troutman. The event will feature local EV owners, car dealerships, various exhibitors and local food trucks.
- Randolph EMC is hosting It’s Electric: NDEW @ The North Carolina Zoo in Asheboro on Sept. 29. Visitors can experience different EV models and explore on-site charging options at the Zoo, while hearing from EV owners and energy advisors.
- Piedmont Electric is hosting Electrify My Ride on Sept. 29 at Carrboro Plaza in Carrboro. The event will feature a ribbon-cutting ceremony for a DC fast charger, electric bikes, EV test drives and an electric bus.
“This is a great opportunity for our members and others within the community to come out and learn more about what it means to drive an electric vehicle – from how and where to charge to the various types of EVs that are available right now,” said Elizabeth Gantt, corporate communications consultant at EnergyUnited. “Not only will we have experts from organizations here in NC, but we’ll also have various drivers with their EVs on display who can share their experiences first-hand.”