Michigan’s Road to Electric
There has been an exciting announcement on Michigan plans to keep electrifying the state. Last week, Governor Gretchen Whitmer, state and local officials, and representatives from Adopt a Charger and Rivian shared news about 15 EV charging sites getting installed throughout Michigan. The plan is to install chargers at state parks and a state fish hatchery over the next couple years.
In celebration of this partnership, they featured a charge of a Rivian R1T pickup at a state park in Ottawa Count where two Rivian Waypoints chargers have been installed.
“These charging stations along the Lake Michigan EV Circuit build on our rich Pure Michigan tradition of exploration and bringing together communities and businesses to ensure that we honor our past as the place that put the world on wheels and continue to invest in our workforce as we lead the transition to electric vehicles. Together, we will keep growing our economy, creating good-paying jobs, and lowering costs for drivers and working families,” said Governor Gretchen Whitmer.
Rivian, an electric vehicle auto company is playing a huge role in this electrification. They have partnered with Adopt a Charger and the Michigan Department of Natural Resources to offer an open charging network. The network will be no cost to the state or taxpayers.
This collaboration shows the state’s eagerness to stay innovative and continue the growth of electric mobility. “Our state parks charging program is how we come together with our partners to offer a solution to EV-charging gaps. We’re making this investment because we believe that exploring the natural world should be possible without contributing to local air pollution, climate change, or damaging the environment,” states Chris Nevers, Senior Director of Public Policy at Rivian.
This growth comes with help from many groups and organizations. Consumers Energy, through the Power MI Drive program is going to cover the cost to upgrade any electrical systems to make sure installation is possible. ITC is an electric transmission company and will cover the cost for electrical for two years. Then Adopt a Charger, a nonprofit that will offer support and marketing as a part of the agreement.
This installation spans from Warren Dunes State Park in the Lower Peninsula, all the way north along Lake Michigan. Along with some inland parks, they estimate 30 charger installations in phase one of plans.
“From these EV charging stations, to installations of solar arrays that power fish hatcheries and other facilities, to building with mass timber and our innovative carbon sequestration development, we are working to improve the environment as we update our own portfolio,” said DNR Director Dan Eichinger
This plan stems from Gov. Whitmer’s idea of a Lake Michigan EV circuit. This circuit is a vehicle route along Lake Michigan and key tourism areas, to create the ultimate EV friendly road trip. This all helps the Charge Up Michigan program, where we can promote a green and clean environment throughout the state. The state is making changes with solar panels and more plans for a smaller carbon footprint.
“As the transition to an electrified mobility future continues to accelerate, innovative initiatives like these are vital to ensuring EVs can be more easily incorporated into our everyday lives, regardless of where you are in the state,” said Trevor Pawl, Chief Mobility Officer with the Office of Future Mobility and Electrification
As the understanding behind the importance for an electric future increases, we are excited to see Michigan adapting to the change. The installations will help get more park visitors and offer EV owners more peace of mind while traveling. People are reluctant to convert over to EV with concerns of vehicle driving range, this plan provides a solution, especially for individuals looking to take the ultimate Michigan road trip.
These installations are going to process in phases. After this year’s rollout the state will look to move to state parks in the upper peninsula. They are hoping these changes help to increase more leisure travel interest from out of state visitors. With tourism being heavily impacted by COVID-19 the state’s Pure Michigan campaign is targeted to help recover the industry and give people a more exciting tourism attraction.
Vehya is founded in Michigan and we are proud to see our state’s continued efforts toward electric mobility. We hope to help our communities continue to grow and offer EV infrastructure for all areas state and nationwide.