These excerpts are from a full article originally published in the StarTribune by reporter Mike Hughlett.

On August 12, 2020, Xcel Energy announced a new electric vehicle (EV) vision aimed at saving customers money and reducing carbon emissions from the transportation sector. Xcel will be working to increase the number of EVs on the road within their service area to more than 30 times what it is today – amounting to 1.5 million EVs.

Minneapolis-based Xcel, the state’s biggest electricity provider, said its projections put 1.5 million electric vehicles on the road in its service areas by 2030 — making up about 20% of all automobiles and light trucks.

The company didn’t have a breakdown by the eight states it serves. But a regulatory filing in June indicates that by 2030, Xcel forecasts 376,000 EVs in Minnesota in a “high-growth” scenario.

“If we can get 1.5 million EVs on the road in our service territories, customers will save $1 billion a year and we will significantly reduce carbon emission,” said Xcel CEO Ben Fowke in an interview.

High-growth scenarios would require increased availability of electric vehicles throughout the state. Consumer choice is limited without clean car standards. Minnesotans who are interested in buying or leasing an electric vehicle, be it a hybrid or full battery one, cannot curently find all available makes and models in our state. In fact, such prospective vehicle customers may not find even one electric vehicle on a dealer lot. This partly because automakers choose to not deliver their electric vehicles to states without clean car standards.

“Right now, it’s not a seamless process for a customer buying an EV,” Fowke said.

While automakers are pouring hundreds of millions of dollars into EV research and development, traditional dealerships don’t seem to be in a rush to peddle electric vehicles.

A report last November from the Sierra Club, an environmental group, concluded that 74% of U.S. auto dealerships weren’t selling EVs, and most of those who did were not prominently displaying them.

Xcel Energy’s plan for Minnesota includes supporting residential charging, increased access to electric transportation for all customers, fleet electrification, and expanded public charging options. Read Xcel’s news release and statements from other supporting organizations.