Bladen County, in Southeastern North Carolina, is now home to an electric vehicle (EV) charging station, thanks to Four County EMC. The station is part of the N.C. electric cooperatives’ EV charging network, which now has more than 75 charging locations statewide that support increased tourism and commerce across cooperative service areas.
Elected officials and local dignitaries joined Four County EMC leaders on Dec. 15 in cutting the ribbon on the installation and celebrating the accomplishment for the county, which previously had no public EV charging infrastructure.
Four County EMC CEO Don Gatton shared how the installation fills a charging gap in a rural area, and is an example of how Four County EMC and co-ops across the state are partnering to expand EV charging and its benefits to cooperative members and the state.
“With EVs becoming more prevalent, we and other co-ops are working to provide the charging stations necessary to meet this growing demand,” Gatton said. “These public charging stations may encourage our members to consider an EV and increases tourism opportunities for EV drivers considering traveling to our area.”
Diane Huis, senior vice president of innovation and business development for North Carolina’s Electric Cooperatives, also spoke at the event, marking her last engagement prior to her retirement in January after more than two decades of service to the co-ops.
“EV charging stations serve North Carolina drivers and cooperative members, and power local economic development,” Huis said. “I commend Four County EMC and cooperatives across the state for leading in innovation that is building a brighter future for North Carolina, now and in the decades to come.”
The Bladen County EV station is one of three Level 2 chargers recently installed by Four County EMC utilizing grants from the N.C. Department of Environmental Quality’s disbursement of Volkswagen settlement funding. The other new chargers are located at the Rose Hill district office and Four County EMC’s headquarters in Burgaw. The cooperative now has five charging stations available to the public across its service territory.
Watch a video of the event from Bladen Online here. Visit ncdriveelectric.com to learn more about the statewide EV charging network.