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PSC hearing on 'electrification of transportation'

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Dave Thompson
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Public Service Commission hearing on 'Electrification of Transportation'

North Dakota’s Public Service Commission held a hearing on the “electrification of transportation” – that is, electric vehicles.

The federal Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act requires each state to consider measures to promote this effort.

One of the issues is whether electric utilities will offer the charging stations themselves, or will provide power to third-parties for those stations – or both.

"Xcel Energy sees great potential for increased EV adoption in North Dakota in the coming years," said Xcel Energy regulatory specialist Alex Nisbet. "We believe that utility involvement in supporting EV adoption and infrastructure development, including engagement with stakeholders, is crucial to reducing market barriers, providing reliable and equitable access to electrified transportation, and optimizing grid efficiency."

Nisbet said Xcel has set up pilot programs in some of the other states it serves – and plans to do that in North Dakota.

For now, MDU is not planning to own charging stations.

"Montana-Dakota believes third-party investment in charging infrastructure will be required, and be a key driver," said MDU director of Business and Energy Services Larry Oswald. "But public utilities may play a role in EV charging infrastructure development, and should not be excluded from owning charging stations."

President Biden has set a goal of having half of all new vehicles to be electric by 2030.

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