Electric-Car Chargers Idling

In “Charging Stations Multiply But Electric Cars Are Few,” today’s WSJ gives us a little status report on the number of charging stations for electric cars and the number of all-electric vehicles on U.S. roads. The good stuff: 

Fewer than 15,000 all-electric cars are on U.S. roads, says Plug In America, a group promoting the technology. . . . and there are about 1,400 publicly accessible chargers scattered around the country.

As usual, the Obama administration’s expectations about this particular “technology of the future” far exceed those from outside his cadre:

The Obama administration hopes one million such cars will be zipping around in 2015, reducing oil dependence, although others expect it will take longer to reach that level. . . . J.D. Power & Associates expects all-electric vehicles will account for less than 1% of U.S. auto sales in 2018, or about 102,000 cars and light trucks. 

But . . . at least people are getting paid to install the charging stations that the market hasn’t demanded:

Charging equipment is popping up largely because of subsidies. As part of a $5 billion federal program to subsidize development of electric vehicles and battery technology, the U.S. Energy Department over the past two years provided about $130 million for two pilot projects that help pay for chargers at homes, offices and public locations.

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