1 min read

WSP's Mobility Marketplace, South Africa's imploding infrastructure, and EV charging grid challenges

Beautiful Cape Town, South Africa, where power and transit infrastructure are suffering.
Beautiful Cape Town, South Africa, where electrical and transportation infrastructure is failing.

Industry giant WSP has announced the launch of a payments platform for public agencies called Mobility Marketplace, which will consolidate tolling, transit, ferry, parking, micromobility, EV charging, and other transportation modes into one account - with one bill, like a utility - for customers (an evolution forward from NYC's MetroCard for subway/bus or the ORCA card in Seattle). The Marketplace will also use AI to make mode and route recommendations for customers. (WSP Insights)

Eskom, the South African electricity utility, has forced rolling blackouts for months, crippling the Rainbow Nation's economy. Now Transnet, the state-owned enterprise that runs South Africa's railroads, ports, and pipelines, is also in trouble, with broken-down locomotives causing freight export volumes to dwindle. According to the IMF, forty percent of sub-Saharan state-owned firms are unprofitable. (The Economist)

The Biden administration hopes that by 20230 IIJA incentives and funding will help spur the installation of 500,000 EV charging stations across the United States. But it won't be easy for the country to reach net-zero emissions by 2050 if it continues to take 10 times as long to charge your EV than it does to pump a full tank of gas. The clean energy transition is going to be more difficult than people think. (ESG)