US opens infrastructure program for communities
The new CFI grants focus on rural and urban areas and include H2 and CNG refuelling stations.
The US Department of Transportation released the first funding charge through a new infrastructure-building program. The Charging and Fueling Infrastructure (CFI) Discretionary Grant Program is in addition to NEVI and pushes US infrastructure funding to the expected $7.5 billion.
The Charging and Fueling Infrastructure (CFI) Discretionary Grant Program alone provides $2.5 billion in funding over five years, of which the first $700 million has now been released for fiscal years 2022 and 2023. This is in addition to the $5 billion National Electric Vehicle Infrastructure (NEVI) Formula Programme, for which the US government set final requirements in February.
EV chargers constructed with CFI funds must adhere to those same standards set via NEVI. This requirement supports a consistent charging experience for users and ensures that our national charging network is convenient, reliable and Made in America, so the press office.
However, while NEVI funding focuses on fast charging stations along highways, the new CFI programme wants to see charging stations and alternative refuelling infrastructure, including both hydrogen and gas, in urban and rural areas, especially in underserved and disadvantaged communities.
“Extending EV charging infrastructure into traditionally underserved areas will ensure that equitable and widespread EV adoption takes hold,” said US Secretary of Energy Jennifer M. Granholm.
The CFI Program has two distinct grant categories and requires that 50% of the funding over five years is made available for each.
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The Community Program will therefore provide $1.25 billion to deploy public EV charging and fueling infrastructure in communities. The installations may be located on any public road or in other publicly accessible locations, such as parking facilities at public buildings, public schools, and public parks.
The Corridor Program will provide $1.25 billion to deploy EV charging infrastructure and hydrogen, propane, and natural gas fueling infrastructure along designated alternative fuel corridors (AFCs).
Applications for the new funding programme can be submitted until 30 May 2023. FHWA and the Joint Office also plan to reach out to potential grant applicants regarding the CFI Program via webinars throughout March and April. They will provide direct technical assistance to support states and communities when applying through the NEVI and CFI programs.
Both programs are to help the USA to install a nationwide network of 500,000 EV chargers by 2030. The funding is part of the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law approved in November 2022.