Does a photo show an electric vehicle charging station powered by a diesel generator? No, that's not true: The photo of a charging station in the short-term parking area of the El Paso, Texas, International Airport does show a generator near the charging station, but it is not powering the station. The two are not connected, according to the company that manages the charging stations.
The photo has circulated on social media since at least November 11, 2021, when it was posted on Reddit. It was posted on Facebook by the page Fed Up Conservatives on July 22, 2022, with two laughing emojis for a caption. The text on the meme reads:
Just pretend you don't see the big diesel generator in the background, while you charge your electric car and save the world...
This is how the post appeared at the time of writing:
(Image source: Facebook screenshot taken on Mon Aug 01 14:48:50 2022 UTC)
Comments on the Reddit thread identified the station's location as the El Paso International Airport. A page on the plugshare.com website dedicated to this Blink charging station has photos of the station that match the one pictured in the meme.
Lead Stories reached out to the Blink Charging Co. public relations office to ask about this charging station. Jon Meyers emailed on August 1, 2022, writing:
The charging station of interest is not powered by the diesel generator or connected to it. ...
To our knowledge, the generator is for emergency lighting and other amenities for the parking lot only and is designed for backup power for the terminal. The generator is not in operation unless there is an emergency, and the main power is off.
A note in the information panel on the plugshare.com page says:
The charging stations are located on a 'green island' near the short term parking exit. Blink RFID card required. Please note these chargers are not run off the diesel generator near the units. That generator is used as back up power for the building.
(Image source: plugshare.com screenshot taken on Mon Aug 01 16:58:57 2022 UTC)
Lead Stories addressed a similar claim regarding a charging station near a generator in the past, in that case the electric vehicle charging station was located in King Township, Ontario, Canada.