Who will pay for charging stations for electric big rigs?

A new federal initiative aims to speed up and better coordinate the rollout of charging and refueling stations for zero-emission big rigs, but industry officials say questions over how much the buildout will cost or who will pick up the tab still need to be resolved, The Wall Street Journal reports.

The Biden administration this week released its strategy laying out where and when battery-electric charging and hydrogen refueling infrastructure will be needed to support a new generation of truck fleets. Administration officials foresee the infrastructure growing rapidly at first around major freight hubs, and then expanding into a national fueling network by 2040.

Trucking and charging-provider executives say the phased strategy will help as they plan the needed infrastructure and should help local governments and utilities prioritize investments.

But some industry groups say the strategy lacks crucial details needed to bring certainty to operators looking to transition their fleets. “The next thing that needs to come out of this is who’s going to pay for all of this?” says Jacqueline Gelb, vice president of energy and environmental affairs at the American Trucking Associations trade group. “It’s the big question sitting at the back of everyone’s minds.”

Trucking executives say the lack of charging infrastructure remains a major concern for carriers as they weigh how to roll out zero-emissions trucks.

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