This brief provides an overview of the historical and current state of government, private sector, and electric utility investment in publicly available charging infrastructure in the United States. This market is in the early stages of development. Multiple business models are being tested, and several sources of funding are being used. Several reports estimate the “infrastructure gap,” or the need for publicly available infrastructure, to be very large over the next decade or two. The public charging network must grow by between four and 16 times from 2017 levels by 2025 in order to meet the needs of the anticipated EV market. The business case for investing in and hosting public charging stations remains challenging. As more EVs hit the roads, electric utility investment and government funding can enhance the value proposition of these services and lower the barriers associated with deploying infrastructure. With increasing funding available from both the electric utility and government sectors, charging service providers and related stakeholders have a significant, near-term opportunity to grow the public EV charging network in the United States and reduce the dependency on government subsidization over time.
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