Energy Northwest leading the charge with network of new EV charging stations 4/12/2022 News Release Rollup Image Page ContentRICHLAND, Wash. – Electric vehicle drivers in Washington will soon have eight more options for charging their rides along U.S. Route 12. Construction is set to begin on new stations along the White Pass Scenic Byway this spring.Leading the infrastructure expansion effort is Energy Northwest, a Washington state joint operating agency that operates one of the largest carbon-free energy portfolios in the region. Energy Northwest has been involved with electric vehicle infrastructure development since 2016 and has overseen installation of 10 EV charging stations throughout eastern and central Washington. The addition of the White Pass Scenic Byway stations will bridge the charging gap between eastern and western parts of the state. “Energy Northwest is striving to help Washington state meet its climate goals and looking to ways we can make an impact in both the energy and transportation sectors," said Greg Cullen, Energy Northwest's vice president for Energy Services & Development. “As transportation evolves, getting the infrastructure in place is vital for communities across Washington." The project is a collaboration among EN, Lewis County Public Utility District and Twin Transit, with support from White Pass Scenic Byway organization, Benton REA and surrounding community members. “Highway 12 is integral for east to west travel, with stretches of rural areas through Lewis, Pierce and Yakima counties. It's designated as an underserved corridor for EV drivers," said Jennifer Harper, Energy Northwest project developer. “There was a desire and support from local communities along the route to bring this effort together."Energy Northwest secured two grants to fund the infrastructure project – a $1.15 million grant from the Washington State Department of Commerce's Clean Energy Fund and about $667,000 from the TransAlta Coal Transition Fund. “Transportation is Washington's largest source of polluting greenhouse gas emissions, and the 2021 State Energy Strategy emphasizes the essential need to improve the design and operation of our state's transportation networks," said Washington State Department of Commerce assistant director Michael Furze. “Establishing charging infrastructure along the White Pass Scenic Byway is a necessary step towards electrifying Washington's transportation sector. We support Energy Northwest's efforts to connect communities and the regions across our state by making long distance electric charging possible in this beautiful part of our state."Stations along the route will include at least one DC fast charger and one Level 2 charger at each site. Each location will also have a White Pass Scenic Byway interpretive sign highlighting nearby attractions and local information. “The White Pass Scenic Byway is a beautiful drive and there are amazing recreational opportunities all along the way. We're thrilled that EV drivers who want to get out and explore places like Mt. Rainier, Mt. St. Helens or Mt. Adams can do so without the worry of where they can charge their vehicles," said Maree Lerchen, White Pass Scenic Byway president. Once the stations are online, they will be listed for drivers to find on the PlugShare website and mobile application. The stations are scheduled to be operational by the end of the year. Contact: Kelly Rae, Public Affairs, 509-372-5376Jennifer Harper, Project Developer, 509-377-4166About Energy Northwest Energy Northwest develops, owns and operates a diverse mix of electricity generating resources, including hydro, solar, battery storage and wind projects – and the Northwest's only nuclear power facility. These projects provide carbon-free electricity at the cost of generation – enough clean, cost-effective and reliable energy to power more than a million homes each year. As an independent joint operating agency of Washington state, Energy Northwest comprises 27 public power member utilities from across the state serving more than 1.5 million customers. The agency continually explores new generation projects to meet its members' needs.