EV Charging Stations Are The Fastest Growing Type Of Alternative Fueling Station

1 year ago by Mark Kane 22

Alternative Fueling Stations by Fuel Type, 1995-2015 (source: energy.gov)

Alternative Fueling Stations by Fuel Type, 1995-2015 (source: energy.gov)

Portland International Airport Boasts One Of The Largest Installations of Electric Vehicle Charging Stations at an Airport in the US: including some 42 PowerPost® EV Chargers

Portland International Airport Boasts One Of The Largest Installations of Electric Vehicle Charging Stations at an Airport in the US: including some 42 PowerPost® EV Chargers

Counting electric vehicle charging points of late seems to destroy the US government’s alternative fueling station counter.

In the latest U.S. DOE Office of Energy Efficiency & Renewable Energy report, charging points were summarized with the other types of alternative fuel stations available today, and it turns out that public EVSEs have quickly exceeded all the other types combined.

Totals have jumped from around 3,500 in 2011, to ~30,000 in 2015.

The problem with such a basic comparison is always that there are different categories of charging points – from individual low power and very slow L1 AC charging, to much faster 50-120 kW DC fast chargers, which more likely reminds consumers of the conventional refueling process.

Anyway, even if we would isolate DC fast chargers, we would see growth, and good sign that one of the alternative fueling technologies have finally taken hold.

“In 2015, there were about 3,600 propane stations, 3,000 E85 stations, and 1,600 compressed natural gas (CNG) refueling stations. The other fuel types (biodiesel, liquefied natural gas (LNG) and hydrogen) altogether have less than 1,000 stations nationwide.”

A separate problem to the tally is the different plug standards of DC fast chargers, which effectively reduces the number of charge points in the tally (because you can’t switch between standards depending on the hardware you find in place upon recharging).

As a bonus we found a strange data point presented by the DOE on hydrogen fuel stations; believe it or not, there were only 39 stations reported in service for 2015 – which is down from 63 in 2009. 2015 was also the fourth consecutive year of decrease.

Supporting Information

Alternative Fueling Stations by Fuel Type, 1995-2015

Year Electric Propane LNG Hydrogen Biodiesel CNG E85 Total
1995 188 3,299 n/a n/a n/a 1,065 37 4,589
1996 194 4,252 72 n/a n/a 1,419 68 6,005
1997 310 4,255 71 n/a n/a 1,426 71 6,133
1998 486 5,318 66 n/a n/a 1,268 40 7,178
1999 490 4,153 46 n/a n/a 1,267 49 6,005
2000 558 3,268 44 n/a 2 1,217 113 5,202
2001 693 3,403 44 n/a 16 1,232 154 5,542
2002 873 3,431 36 7 79 1,166 149 5,741
2003 830 3,966 62 7 142 1,035 188 6,230
2004 671 3,689 58 9 176 917 200 5,720
2005 588 2,995 40 14 304 787 436 5,164
2006 465 2,619 37 17 459 732 762 5,091
2007 442 2,371 35 32 742 721 1,208 5,551
2008 430 2,175 38 46 645 778 1,644 5,756
2009 465 2,468 36 63 679 772 1,928 6,411
2010 541 2,647 39 58 644 841 2,142 6,912
2011 3,394 2,597 45 56 627 910 2,442 10,071
2012 13,392 2,654 59 58 675 1,107 2,553 20,498
2013 19,410 2,956 81 53 757 1,263 2,639 27,159
2014 25,602 2,931 103 51 783 1,495 2,840 33,805
2015 30,945 3,594 111 39 721 1,563 2,990 39,963
Starting in 2011, electric charge equipment was counted by the plug rather than by the geographical location. This is different than other fuels, which only count the geographical location regardless of how many dispensers or nozzles are on site.Stations selling low-level biodiesel blends (less than B20) are included in the station listing only for the years 2005-2007.Total is the total number of fuel types sold at stations. Stations are counted once for each type of fuel sold.Acronyms:
n/a: Data not available
CNG: Compressed natural gas
E85: 85% ethanol, 15% gasoline
LNG: Liquefied natural gas
B20: 20% biodiesel, 80% petroleum dieselSource: U.S. Department of Energy, Alternative Fuels Data Center, Alternative Fueling Station Counts by State, website accessed February 2016.

source: energy.gov

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22 responses to "EV Charging Stations Are The Fastest Growing Type Of Alternative Fueling Station"

  1. How many electric charging points can supply more than 10 kW of power, or more?

    With billions of electric outlets globally it’s time we differentiate those locations providing higher power charging (rate of adding energy) instead of an arbitrary list of locations without context to speed of delivery. (ie: 1-2 kW outlets excluded, but no info provided on number of 10-100 kW outlets)

    There is a substantial difference between extended range (high speed) charging and destination charging! This is no different that counting gasoline jugs (cans), or propane bottles as possible fueling options vs visiting a higher volume faster power delivery station.

    FYI: The quality of a electric charging location is much more valuable metric than the quantity of locations In a geographic region. Looking forward to seeing data published on locations that exceed a pragmatic quality bar for reliability and accessibility. 😉

    1. RexxSeer says:

      I agree, and in the same fashion weak PHEVs should be classified as such, all of them except the Volt! Strange after 6 years of “supposed” competition that only one model still has much more AER than the ludicrous 15-20 miles of the others!

      1. Rightofthepeople says:

        Not really just one model anymore. The Hyundai Sonata PHEV gets 27 miles of electric range, and the BMW i3 Rex gets something like 75. Granted, the Volt’s electric / total range combo is far superior to both, but the Volt isn’t for everyone. It’s a rather small car, so the Sonata PHEV or even Ford Fusion Energi PHEV may be better options for some people. And while e-range may be weak, doesn’t it help further the cause of ending our dependence on gasoline by getting more people into PHEVs and thus exposing them to the joy of driving electric? Surely you can see that is a better alternative than having the general public continue to drive Ford F-150s everywhere. Thus, IMO, it is definitely worth measuring the total sales of all plugins including so called weak PHEVs.

        1. RexxSee says:

          Not “better”, until manufacturers really start competing seriously in a competitive way, it will only be compliance “less worse”… and “badder” for the climate.

          How come Hyundai could not even match the old Volt’s AER of 2010 ?!? This is a cartel, only faking competition. They still wish to re-kill the electric car.

    2. Brandon says:

      Infrastructure really has expanded, and now the challenge is to find a reliable place to charge. Here is something I wrote about this titled:

      Reliable Fast Charge Networks


      Adding to this,
      I have seen improvement in EVgo’s installations here on the east coast. Many locations have two fast chargers now. And to EVgo’s credit they usually have Level 2 chargers at well.

    3. Brian, Stomp is proposing to the FTC all EVs and EV charging stations be ranked by charge time. Users of Stomp’s 30 Sec Recharging TM’ Electric SUVs & 30 Sec Recharging TM’ Stations, will have access to a grid of 30 Sec Recharging TM’ Station’s. Thank you, Brian!

    4. Djoni says:

      Pretty hard to make comparison between different energy source.
      But one thing is for sure; electric charging is growing faster than anything else and seems to accelerate.
      This is all good.
      Since some are destination charger, for those, time is mostly irrelevant.

  2. Brandon says:

    Here’s an interesting fact for fast charger growth: There is now an average of 1 fast charger added a day in the US. I record all fast chargers added to PlugShare, so that’s where I get this. This is not counting Tesla Superchargers.

    1. Kdawg says:

      By “fast charger” do you mean DC fast charger, or L2?

      1. Brandon says:

        DC Fast Chargers. ie CHAdeMO and CCS. Level 2 is not called a fast charger that I’ve heard of. What where you thinking of there?

        1. Brandon says:

          Another interesting bit of info: my rough calculations show that in 2015 the fast chargers in the US were getting close to being doubled, meaning almost as many were installed last year as what existed before.
          Quite something.

        2. kdawg says:

          Just clarifying you were indeed talking about DCFC.

  3. SJC says:

    “Portland International Airport Boasts One Of The Largest Installations of Electric Vehicle Charging Stations…”
    Notice in the photo they are all not used.

    1. Matt says:

      They are getting more and more crowded at PDX. I travel and use them 2-3 times a month. Only one spot left after I plugged in at the one bank I normally use. The other bank is a ways away and I’ve only parked there once. Tons of Leafs, i3’s, and Sparks. A couple of VW,s, and or course, my Kia!

    2. David D. Nelson says:

      Go to plugshare.com to see a picture of nearly every stall in use. I posted it there a few months ago and was glad there was a space available for me. My car is the white Kia Soul EV. They are definitely getting plenty of use.

      1. SJC says:

        That is good to hear, but using a photo of empty chargers is not helping make their point.

  4. Cavaron says:

    If anyone is interestedin statistics for german charging infrastructure:

  5. Josh says:

    Only one of these data sets looks like customer technology adoption. It is time to kill off (support for) a few of the others.

    1. Foo says:

      But then… that would be evidence-based policy-making. That’s just crazy talk.

  6. doug says:

    This is always a tough comparison since of course a single liquid fuel pump can service many ICE cars in an hour, where as a destination charger may take several hours to charge up one EV.

    So maybe if these stats got normalized by travel miles added per minute. Would be difficult to calculate accurately, but even a first order approximation would be interesting.

    1. Josh says:

      Usage would be a better metric than available infrastructure.

  7. Mike I says:

    I think the number of hydrogen fueling stations was decreasing because transit agencies gave up and didn’t buy any hydrogen buses after their field trials were done. That definitely happened in British Columbia. I don’t recall any specific instances in the States. The only hydrogen bus service that I know is still active is AC Transit in the SF East Bay.