PRC hopes to finalize the transport electrification plan by the end of the year
The New Mexico Public Regulatory Commission on Wednesday unanimously approved the issuance of a notice of proposed rulemaking in hopes of finalizing the agency’s transportation electrification rule by the end of the year. ‘year.
This rule is intended to work hand-in-hand with investor-owned utility transportation electrification plans that state regulators have already approved.
This follows a long stakeholder engagement prior to the development of the rules, an effort which was led by Commissioner Joseph Maestas. That engagement included a statewide summit earlier this year hosted by consulting and engineering firm Gridworks.
“This is a very important step for the entire state because transportation is the second largest source of carbon emissions and state agencies and private entities are going to have to work hand in hand to move New Mexico and its infrastructure into a cleaner, more sustainable future,” Maestas said.
Rule-making processes can be lengthy, but PRC General Counsel Russel Fisk said the transportation electrification rule isn’t as complicated as some other rules the PRC has recently finalized. such as the community solar rules. He said he doesn’t expect much controversy around the transport electrification rule.
The goal is to work with other state agencies and utilities to help build electric vehicle support infrastructure such as charging stations.
Mary Jane Parks, a U.S. Department of Energy solar innovator helping the PRC modernize the grid, said the transportation sector’s transition from oil to electricity is more complicated than simply replacing internal combustion engines. by electric vehicles. She said some of the considerations should include fair availability and reliability.
This rule-making process is important because state agencies like the New Mexico Department of Transportation have announced grants and programs to increase charging stations.
Additionally, the state is receiving $38 million over the next five years from the Federal Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act for electric vehicle infrastructure and has $10 million from American Rescue. Plan Act that the state has allocated to charging stations, Maestas pointed out.
Wednesday’s action triggers a series of deadlines, which includes a public hearing in November.
The transportation electrification rule could be the last rule the PRC’s elected body finalizes, as the state regulator becomes an appointed commission in 2023.