Plans in place to create network of electric vehicle charging stations in North Carolina

RALEIGH, N.C. (WTVD) -- Matt Simmons owns Raleigh EV, which converts cars into electric vehicles.

As many in North Carolina struggle to find gas because of the Colonial Pipeline interruption and panic buying, Simmons said he's getting more interest.

"I would imagine this would raise some people's eyebrows to the idea of going to electric," Simmons said. "We are in the middle of ramping up this year anyways, so we've been getting a ton of calls."

North Carolina Electric Cooperatives is working on creating a statewide network of electric vehicle charging stations.

The nonprofit electric utility serves mainly rural areas and already has nearly 60 charging stations across the state.

It's in the process of installing additional DC Fast Charging stations.

They are a lot more expensive to buy but charge electric vehicles much faster.

"We're not really highly encouraging people to use the DC fast chargers, but they are a necessity to have out there so that people can travel by electric vehicle, and for the co-ops, we really want people to be able to get to beautiful parts of the state that we serve such as the mountains and coastal communities, so we see it as an economic development initiative," said Diane Huis, of North Carolina Electric Cooperatives.

She said they see this network as a way to help reduce their overall environmental footprint.

She added that when you charge your electric vehicle at home, you can save money compared to gas.

Some municipalities, such as Raleigh and Durham, have electric vehicle charging stations throughout the community.

Some public charging stations are free while others have a fee.

If you buy an electric vehicle, there's a federal tax credit of up to $7,500 for some cars.

In addition, some co-ops may provide incentives towards the costs of a home charger and installation.

Plug-in NC promotes electric vehicle driving in North Carolina.
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