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Walmart Accelerates EV Charging Infrastructure Expansion Across the U.S

by Anna

In a strategic move towards advancing its commitment to sustainability, Walmart is set to take control of its electric vehicle (EV) charging infrastructure. The retail giant plans to roll out an extensive network of fast-charging stations across thousands of its U.S. stores and Sam’s Club locations, marking a substantial leap in the accessibility of EV charging for customers.

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While many of Walmart’s existing charging stations are currently operated by networks like Electrify America, the company aims to own and operate a branded network, integrated with its app and conveniently located in store parking lots. This initiative, scheduled for full implementation in 2024, aligns with Walmart’s broader plans to remodel 650 stores and construct over 150 new stores, all equipped with EV charging stations as part of its “Store of the Future” layout.

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The first wave of this expansion will see two stores in Florida and Georgia opening in the coming months. Walmart envisions building a national fast-charging network with a minimum of 10,000 chargers across 2,500 Walmart and Sam’s Club locations by 2030, as outlined in its 2023 Environmental, Social, and Governance report.

With more than 1.4 million electric vehicles sold in the U.S. last year and a total of four million on the roads today, Walmart aims to capitalize on the surging popularity of electric cars. The company’s extensive retail footprint, with 10,509 locations worldwide, including 4,616 stores in the U.S. and 599 Sam’s Clubs, strategically places EV charging within reach for about nine in 10 Americans living within 10 miles of a Walmart or Sam’s Club.

Walmart has been actively involved in EV infrastructure since 2018, boasting nearly 300 charging stations with Electrify America’s 150 kW and 350 kW chargers. As it embarks on this ambitious expansion, Walmart plans to own and operate chargers using partner technology. While it remains uncertain what role Electrify America will play in these future plans, Walmart has previously collaborated with other major DCFC networks, including ChargePoint and EVgo.

Two Supercenters in Springdale, Arkansas, and Cross Roads, Texas, have already been renovated to include chargers directly operated by Walmart, signaling the company’s commitment to providing a seamless EV charging experience for its customers. These stations, adorned with Walmart’s signature branding, exemplify the company’s dedication to enhancing its sustainability initiatives.

This significant EV charging expansion aligns with Walmart’s broader efforts to electrify its fleet, which includes trucks, vans, and delivery vehicles. By replacing traditional gas- and diesel-fueled vehicles with zero-emission alternatives, Walmart is actively contributing to its carbon emissions reduction goals. The company currently powers about 47% of its operations with renewable energy and aims to achieve 100% renewable energy usage by 2035. Additionally, Walmart plans to bring 10 GW of new clean energy projects online by the end of the decade, further solidifying its commitment to a sustainable future.

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