If you build it, they will plug in. That’s the findings from a recent study of workplace charging from the Department of Energy’s EV Everywhere program, which laid out the Workplace Charging Challenge to get private employers to encouraging plug-in car ownership. The effort has paid off, as employees with access to charging stations are 20 times more like to drive a plug-in car.
That’s according to a recent DoE study that looked at companies that have installed charging stations for their employees. When charging stations were available, the study found that about 1 in 73 people was likely to drive a plug-in car, compared to 1 in 1,400 for the rest of the work. More importantly, the stations are being used, with 90% of the participating companies reporting that the charging stations were filled every day during the workweek.
The Workplace Charging Challenge initially began with just 30 participating companies but has since grown to include over 150 employers, 300 different workplaces, and over 600,000 employees. Since this challenge began, some 6.7 million kWh have been used at workplace charging stations, saving an estimated 800,000 gallons of fuel and adding another perk for employers to lure potential candidates with.
With such a high level of success, perhaps it’s time we rethink how plug-in cars are promoted. The Workplace Charging Challenge runs through 2018, and with plug-in car sales surging past 100,000 units in the U.S. for the first time, electric cars might finally be catching on.