Increase in PEV Purchases Sparks Rise in Workplace Charging

Photo of a car being charged in a company's parking garage.

The growing number of plug-in electric vehicles (PEVs) spurs expansion of charging station installations at companies of all sizes.

Two years ago, a small credit union in California added a charging station for three employees’ plug-in electric vehicles. A year later, the business added another. It now has the capability to recharge six to eight PEVs on a daily basis. As one manager put it, “If you build it, they will come.”

Across the United States, PEVs are moving out of the early-phase market. Statistics provided by the California Plug-In Electric Vehicle Collaborative (CPEVC), a public/private organization focused on accelerating the adoption of PEVs in the state, leave little doubt that PEV popularity—especially in California—is increasing at a steady rate. Almost 140,000 PEVs are on the road in the Golden State, and 3,000–5,000 new vehicles are sold every month. As a result, more people are charging their cars in public, including at their workplace.

CPEVC assists companies of all sizes with planning for and installing charging stations through webinars, case studies, and online publications. A related website, the Small Biz Toolkit, featured by CoolCalifornia.org, offers money-saving ideas, success stories, and a small-business carbon footprint calculator.

Clean Cities also promotes workplace charging initiatives, and the program’s coalitions often partner with companies and municipalities to establish local charging infrastructure. See an example in this case study and this Clean Cities video success story. The U.S. Department of Energy Office of Energy Efficiency’s Workplace Charging Challenge encourages America’s employers in all sectors to provide PEV charging access at their worksites, and the website provides tools and resources to help make it happen, such as the Plug-In Electric Vehicle Handbook for Workplace Charging Hosts, Developing Infrastructure to Charge Plug-In Electric Vehicles, a sample employee survey for workplace charging planning, and successful workplace charging management.

To learn more about CPEVC’s efforts to educate small businesses in California, see the article “Small Business—Driver for Electric Vehicle Charging Growth.”