Electric Cooperatives Win Funding to Expand Rural EV Charging

Three electric cooperatives are receiving more than $40,000 in funding to bring new electric vehicle (EV) charging stations to rural North Carolina. The funding comes as part of a second round of rebates from the North Carolina Department of Environmental Quality (DEQ) and will further build out the electric cooperatives’ statewide EV charging network.

Blue Ridge Energy, Four County EMC and Randolph EMC were awarded funding to install Level 2 charging stations in locations within their service territories. Blue Ridge Energy and Randolph sited stations in public areas, and Four County will utilize the funds to add charging at two of their offices. Each location will help fill charging gaps in rural areas, providing locals with new charging options and increased local opportunities for tourism and commerce from travelers.

“Blue Ridge Energy is preparing for EVs to become more commonplace in the near future,” said Jon Jacob, energy solutions manager at Blue Ridge Energy. “Our beautiful mountainous service area already has many visitors and tourists. Adding new public charging stations, both Level 2 and DC Fast, makes our area more attractive to EV drivers which benefits our local economy and our members.”

Blue Ridge Energy EV

Blue Ridge Energy and co-ops statewide are increasing tourism and local economic opportunity through expanded rural EV charging.

The new stations will be located in the towns of Sparta (Blue Ridge Energy), Robbins (Randolph EMC), Rose Hill and Elizabethtown (Four County EMC), and Blue Ridge Energy also assisted the town of West Jefferson in a successful bid for funding a charging station downtown. The stations will expand the electric cooperatives’ statewide charging network to more than 60 locations in communities from the mountains to the coast.

Cooperatives were selected to receive the funding by DEQ for Level 2 charging projects as part of the NC Volkswagen Mitigation Settlement Program.

Previously, electric cooperatives received close to $700,000 to fund 10 high-speed charging stations in rural and suburban areas. In total, N.C. electric cooperatives have won more than $740,000 through the settlement program to expand rural and suburban charging and bring new opportunity to cooperative communities.

For more information about driving electric and the electric cooperatives’ rural EV charging network, visit NCDriveElectric.com. For a full list of funding recipient and more information, visit NCDEQ.