Rhode Island Releases Strategic Policy Guide for Electrifying Transportation

Source: Werner Slocum, NREL 65871

On December 30, 2021, Rhode Island’s Governor McKee and the Office of Energy Resources submitted a strategic policy guide for electrifying the transportation sector to the General Assembly. “Electrifying Transportation: A Strategic Policy Guide for Improving Access to Electric Vehicle Charging Infrastructure in Rhode Island” was developed by the Office of Energy Resources alongside the Rhode Island Department of Transportation and the state’s Department of Motor Vehicles, in response to a legislative order in 2021.

The goal of this report is to assess the status quo for EV charging in Rhode Island, identify key needs for infrastructure development, and act as a guide for various agencies which will help implement the strategies within.

“I was proud to sign the Act on Climate, which puts Rhode Island on a sustainable pathway toward a future of net-zero emissions," Governor McKee said. "The 'Electrifying Transportation' report continues our commitment to renewable energy and showcases that this is an objective across multiple agencies in state government.”

“Accelerating our adoption of clean transportation solutions is vital if we are to meet our greenhouse gas emissions reduction mandates under the 2021 Act on Climate,” said State Energy Commissioner Nicholas S. Ucci. “This policy guide identifies strategies to increase the adoption of electric vehicles and utilization of charging stations; improve physical access; promote equitable deployment; and ensure continued investment for transportation infrastructure.”
Through the development of the report, key priorities were identified for Rhode Island’s work in the coming years:

  • Reinvest in incentive programs for electric vehicles and charging infrastructure;
  • Refine electric vehicle and charging infrastructure programs to align with priorities and to center equity such that benefits accrue to underserved and overburdened communities;
  • Demonstrate progress in electrifying transit, school buses, and medium- and heavy-duty vehicles in order to reduce harmful emissions and improve public health;
  • Conduct an analysis to understand transportation revenue impacts and develop recommendations for future action to ensure sustainable funding streams;
  • Support a 100% Renewable Energy Standard to ensure electric transportation is truly decarbonized;
  • Develop a clean transportation dashboard to track progress; and
  • Demonstrate action through state agency commitments and accountability.

The full report is available here.