Yesterday I appeared on Fox Business to discuss whether a $100 million taxpayer investment in electric vehicle charging stations is worth it. I noted during the debate that it’s important that we invest in fuel diversity for our transportation sector, as we’ll never experience cheap gasoline again. We’re drilling record amounts of oil but it’s not leading to lower gas prices, as oil is priced globally – and today’s higher prices are driven by continued global demand. So the Feds should be investing in alternative transportation infrastructure. And the federal government has a long history of involvement in transportation infrastructure. Article I Section 8 of the US Constitution directed Congress to construct postal mail roads; the Pacific Railway Act of 1862 directed the federal government to give land away to railroads to help build a national network; and the 1956 Interstate Highway Act committed hundreds of billions of taxpayer dollars to construct a federal highway system, transforming America from an oil exporting nation to an oil importing country in less than a decade. $100 million to build electric car charging stations is a solid investment that, when coupled with expansion of public bus and other mass transit investments, can begin to help working families break our oil addiction.
Tyson Slocum is Director of Public Citizen’s Energy Program. Follow him on Twitter @tysonslocum