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WEC Energy (WEC) Joins Midwest Group to Expand EV Network

WEC Energy (WEC) is now part of a 12-utility member group, which aims to expand the electric vehicle charging network across the Midwest.

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This story originally appeared on Zacks

In order to expand the electric vehicle (EV) infrastructure and charging network, WEC Energy Group WEC  joins the 12 member group of Midwest EV Charging Network, which is a multi-state effort. Per this initiative, the company will assist in expanding the EV charging network within the service territories.

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Currently, it has 50 EV charging ports and its utilities We Energies and Wisconsin Public Service also received approvals for pilot programs to help the residential and businesscustomers install the EV charging systems in their homes and businesses.



Per the Edison Electric Institute, 18.7 million EVs will run on the U.S. roads by 2030, indicating 7% growth from the 2018 levels and to realize this objective, 9.6 million charge ports will be required. Within the same time frame, annual sales of EVs are expected to exceed 3.5 million.



EV usage is expected to increase globally over the next decade and the charging infrastructure is going to play the most crucial role in the wide adoption of EVs. Globally, TotalEnergies SE TTE proved to be quite active in installing the EV charging infrastructure in different cities of Europe, China and Singapore.



Given the huge growth potential in the EV charging business, energy giants like BP Plc. BP is investing in EV charging network development. BP has been developing the EV charging network in the United Kingdom and China for a while now.

Other Clean Energy Efforts

This move is in line with WEC Energy’s plans to cut carbon emission by 60% within 2025 and80% by 2030, both from its2005 baseline. It also targets net carbon neutrality by 2050. Plus, it is focused on replacing older generation facilities with zero-carbon-emitting renewable and natural gas-based generation by 2025. In 2020, the company reduced carbon emissions by 50% from its 2005 levels.



The utility also expects to trim methane emissions by 100% from the 2011 levels within2030, which was earlier planned to be 30%. To this end, it has retired 1,800 megawatt (MW) of coal-fired plants since 2018 and aims to remove another 1,800 MW by 2025.



The company is investing in cost-effective zero-carbon generation like solar and wind. In the 2021-2025 time frame, it plans to invest $16.1 billion. Commercial operation of Badger Hollow I and II are likely to begin in the fourth quarter of 2021 and 2022, respectively. The Paris SolarBattery Park and Darien SolarBattery Park are likely to enter service in 2023 while Koshkonong Solar-Battery Park is expected to come online in 2024.

Price Movement

In the past three months, shares of WEC Energy have lost 3.1% compared with the industry’s fall of 0.7%.

Three Months’ Price Performance

Zacks Investment ResearchImage Source: Zacks Investment Research

Zacks Rank & Key Pick

The company currently carries a Zacks Rank #3 (Hold). You can see the complete list of today’s Zacks #1 Rank (Strong Buy) stocks here.



A better-ranked utility is Otter Tail Corporation OTTR, flaunting a Zacks Rank #1 at present. Its long-term (three to five years) earnings growth rate is pegged at 4.7%. The company delivered a trailing four-quarter earnings surprise of 31.79%, on average.



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