Washington State Plans to Mandate Tesla EV Charging Plug for Companies Using Federal Funds

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Washington state is making plans to mandate the use of Tesla’s electric vehicle charging plug for companies participating in a state program aimed at electrifying highways using federal funding. This decision follows a similar move by Texas to require Tesla’s technology, known as the North American Charging Standard (NACS), which aligns with CEO Elon Musk’s vision of establishing it as the national charging standard.

General Motors (GM), Ford, and Rivan have expressed their support for Tesla’s NACS, disregarding the Biden administration’s efforts to establish the Combined Charging System (CCS) as the dominant charging standard in the United States. Tonia Buell, the alternative fuels program manager at Washington state’s Department of Transportation, expressed her satisfaction with the unification around NACS, as it allows for broader access to different vehicle makes and models. However, she also acknowledged the need to ensure its compatibility and certification for other auto manufacturers.

Washington state plans to require the use of NACS at its state-funded and federally-funded charging sites in the future, though careful testing and certification processes are necessary. The state intends to initiate the requests for proposals process in the upcoming fall. Buell emphasized that the decision aims to “future-proof” the state’s investments in electric vehicle infrastructure.

The state officials are currently assessing the appropriate balance of NACS chargers based on existing federal requirements. According to federal rules, each taxpayer-backed site must have a minimum of four CCS chargers. Buell suggested that Washington state may mandate the compatibility of at least two chargers with NACS, or possibly even all four. This move by Washington state could potentially exert pressure on other states and the federal government to adopt Tesla’s NACS as the prevailing charging standard.

Source: Reuters


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