Not as easy as it looks: Report highlights obstacles for charging electric vehicles

Brianne Van Gorder of Rancho Bernardo loves her new Volkswagen eGolf. But as a first-time owner of an electric vehicle, she’s not so crazy about finding a way to charge it when she is away from home.

Sometimes, she has trouble finding a public charging station. And once she has found a charging station, Van Gorder learned she must first download an app from the companies operating the charging station to get the electricity flowing into her bright blue four-door.

“It’s so frustrating,” the civil engineer said. “I literally got this car about three weeks ago and I’ve discovered you have to have an app for each one of them. It’s not like there’s a universal app.”

Van Gorder’s complaints echo many of the same concerns raised in a report called “Ready to Charge,” released this week by Environment California and two partners.

“We’re still at a point where it can be a pretty big adventure to charge your car when you’re not at home,” said Dan Jacobson, the group’s director, who longs for the day when charging an electric vehicle, or EV, is just as easy and quick as filling up a gasoline-powered car or truck.

But the 38-page report says the day-to-day experience for EV drivers has a long way to go to reach that place and points to a host of issues that threaten to slow the state’s hoped-for transition from internal combustion engine cars and trucks to zero-emissions vehicles.

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Not as easy as it looks: Report highlights obstacles for charging electric vehicles, by Rob Nikolewski, The San Diego Union-Tribune, April 5, 2019.

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