DEC installs charging stations at 2 Adirondack facilities, with more to come
By Mike De Socio
Two campgrounds in the Adirondacks are now home to electric car charging stations, part of a larger initiative by the state to support electric vehicle use.
The Department of Environmental Conservation says electric car chargers have been installed at Meadowbrook Campground in Ray Brook and Frontier Town Campground in North Hudson. The Meadowbrook site has one dual charging station, and Frontier Town has four single-car chargers, according to DEC. The charging stations are meant to be used by visitors and campground staff alike.
A DEC spokesperson said the agency is working to identify additional campgrounds and facilities where electric vehicle chargers would make sense. Future locations for chargers have not yet been finalized, but the DEC said it plans to install more in the Adirondacks and elsewhere in the state.
The most important criteria for locating new charging stations, DEC said, is the availability of existing power infrastructure. Electric car chargers draw large amounts of power, sometimes rapidly, and often require infrastructure upgrades to support them. DEC said both Meadowbrook and Frontier Town already met the charging power requirements.
The DEC spokesperson said the new campground charging stations have seen a positive response from the public, and are already being used by campers and DEC staff.
Beyond DEC campgrounds, New York State has started a number of programs in recent years to boost electric vehicle ownership. One such effort, dubbed EVolveNY, aims to build 200 fast chargers at 50 locations across the state, with the goal of reducing “range anxiety” along New York’s major transportation corridors.
In the Adirondacks, the state is one of multiple entities working to expand charging infrastructure and make owning an electric vehicle a more realistic option for residents and tourists alike. Currently, there are about 700 electric vehicles on the road in the North Country, and about 200 charging ports, the vast majority of which are “level two” stations that take hours to give a full charge. But the state has recently installed “fast chargers” in Schroon Lake, Watertown and Malone, with more on the horizon.
Private businesses have also made their own investments in EV charging. Stewart’s Shops announced in July its installation of a fast-charging station at a store in Schodack — one of five charging stations it hopes to open by the end of the year in Moreau, Latham, Keene and Clifton Park. Stewart’s relied on a partnership with the state’s EVolve New York Clean Energy Initiative to finance the installations.
All of these efforts are guided by larger climate goals set into law in 2019 under the Climate Leadership and Community Protection Act. The state wants to reduce overall greenhouse gas emissions by 85% by 2050, and in the near term wants to see 850,000 fully electric vehicles on the road by 2025.
New York, however, still lags behind other states in terms of charging infrastructure. A recent report by Zutobi ranks New York in ninth place for charging infrastructure nationally — with 52 charging ports per 100,000 vehicles. Vermont tops the list, with 123 chargers per 100,00 vehicles.
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