An electric vehicle is plugged into a charger in Los Angeles, Aug. 25, 2022. Since passage of the Inflation Reduction Act, it has boosted the U.S. transition to renewable energy, accelerated green domestic manufacturing, and made it more affordable for consumers to make climate-friendly purchases. Credit: Jae C. Hong / AP

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The Bangor Daily News’  Aug. 29 editorial relies on outdated information to cast doubt on Maine’s readiness for the transition to cleaner cars. The editorial links to an  article from February 2021 as evidence that Maine is behind in installing electric vehicle infrastructure. However, this sector is changing quickly, and the public should have the benefit of up-to-date information as they are considering these policy proposals.

In November 2021, Congress passed the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law, with $7.5 billion in EV charging infrastructure funding, $19 million of which is coming to Maine. In May 2022, Maine passed LD 1959, a law requiring grid planning to support the state’s climate goals, including the EV targets in the climate action plan. In August 2022, Congress passed the  Inflation Reduction Act, which expanded and extended federal EV tax incentives, and provided incentives for domestic EV and battery manufacturing.

Maine’s EV charging infrastructure plan, Recharge Maine, is funding the construction of a statewide network of public charging stations sufficient to support the adoption of these standards. Just last month $6 million for new fast charging stations down east and into Aroostook County were announced. An American Council for an Energy-Efficient Economy (ACEEE)  report this June found Maine ranked 11th nationwide in transportation electrification readiness, ahead of other New England states except Massachusetts and Vermont.

Maine is ready for the transition to electric vehicles. We urge the adoption of these standards so Mainers across the state can begin to benefit from the growing clean car and truck market, and not get left behind.

Jack Shapiro

Climate & Clean Energy Director

Natural Resources Council of Maine