In a move towards furthering the acceptance of emission-free vehicles, US-based multinational retail giant Walmart has revealed that it has plans to install EV chargers in thousands of its American outlets.
The US retail behemoth, which currently offers EV chargers at a small number of its American locations, announced intentions to “develop our own EV fast-charging network at thousands of Walmart and Sam’s Club locations coast-to-coast,” noting that over 90% of the US population lives within 10 miles of a Walmart.
According to Cox Automotive, electric vehicles made up 5.8% of the United States market for new automobiles in 2021, up from 3.2% in 2020.
President Joe Biden had supported a 2021 bipartisan infrastructure plan that contained USD 7.5 billion for a national network of electric vehicle chargers.
Biden had also emphasised other initiatives from the corporate sector to hasten the transition, such as Hertz’s promises to boost the number of EV rentals and Google’s EV tax credit search tools.
A larger and more accessible EV charging network is seen as a crucial component of the EV transition, as highlighted by Walmart, which operates more than 5,300 stores nationwide, including 600 Sam’s Club locations.
For drivers who have been hesitant to buy an EV due to worries, they won’t be able to find a charger in a clean, bright, and safe spot when they need one, having easy access to on-the-go charging is a game-changer, according to Walmart.
There are 1,300 EV chargers now available at Walmart’s more than 280 US locations.
“With a store or club located within 10 miles of approximately 90% of Americans, we are uniquely positioned to deliver a convenient charging option that will help make EV ownership possible whether people live in rural, suburban or urban areas. Our goal is to meet the needs of customers and members where they live and open the road to those driving across the country. Easy access to on-the-go charging is a game changer for drivers who have been hesitant to purchase an EV for concerns they won’t be able to find a charger in a clean, bright, and safe location when needed,” the company said.
“What’s more, with our chargers located on-site with our Supercenters, Neighborhood Markets and Sam’s Clubs, we can offer customers and members the convenience of being able to pick up essentials for their families or grab a bite to eat while they charge. And in line with our purpose, we aim to offer Everyday Low Price charging — helping ease transportation costs, still the second highest household cost for much of our country,” it stated further.
“At the same time, as more drivers transition to EVs, our network growth will help expand domestic EV charging capacity across states. We see our commitment today as a natural extension of our work to help customers and members live better, easier and more sustainable lives — a big win for busy families and drivers everywhere, our country and the planet,” it concluded.