Alaska is slated to get its own EV charging network, making EV ownership more viable on the Last Frontier.
By summer, the state-run Alaska Energy Authority plans to install DC fast-charging stations along the state's main highway corridor, according to a recent Anchorage Daily News report.
The planned route will connect the coastal cities of Homer and Seward with Healy, south of the major city of Fairbanks, the report said. Existing charging stations will reportedly allow drivers to continue on to Fairbanks.
The plan calls for nine stations less than 100 miles apart. An Alaska Public Media report from earlier this year also said officials planned to locate stations no more than five miles from the highway for easy access.
Alaska currently has no significant fast-charging infrastructure. There are just a few CHAdeMO and CCS stations in the state, and just one Tesla Supercharger station.
2017 Tesla Model X
The Alaska Energy Authority has $1 million in Volkswagen diesel settlement money to fund the network, but is also looking for contributions from private businesses, according to the Anchorage Daily News.
The same report noted that electric cars are still rare in Alaska, but that their numbers are growing steadily. Some consumers might be concerned about EVs' ability to handle intense winter driving conditions, but multiple tests of electric cars in Norway have shown that battery packs can handle cold climates.
While some range loss is to be expected, the effect of cold temperatures on EV battery packs is better understood now than it was when the first modern electric cars launched about a decade ago, and automakers have employed improvements like heat pumps that could help a lot in these conditions.