Smart Grids and Electric Vehicles: Made for each other?

The International Transport Forum at the OECD has released a new report called “Smart Grids and Electric Vehicles: Made for each other?”

The International Transport Forum at the OECD has released a new report called “Smart Grids and Electric Vehicles: Made for each other?” The paper examines the potential for smart grids and EVs to drive the improvement of electricity systems worldwide. It should provide useful support for boosters of EVs, as its conclusions mirror several arguments that the sustainable mobility media has been making for some time.

A summary of the report’s conclusions:

  • Smart grid technologies make it possible for electric vehicles to proliferate without overloading the electric supply industry.
  • Electric vehicles are driving investment in smart grid technologies.
  • Electric vehicles may be useful for matching intermittent solar and wind power supplies to demand, soaking up excess off-peak power supply and feeding power back into the grid when needed.
  • Electric cars may be attractive to some homeowners for their capacity to provide back-up supply in case of power cuts.

The paper also noted a few caveats (again, no surprises here for Charged readers):

  • Making grids smart requires significant upfront investment, but offers the prospect of reducing the overall cost of electricity.
  • Due to the limitations of current battery technology, widespread commercialization of EVs appears set to remain modest in the short to medium term.
  • Much of the technology needed to integrate EVs into a smart grid is still under development, and needs to be demonstrated on a large scale in real world operating conditions.
  • Adaptation of the regulatory framework for electricity supply is the key to making smart grids technically and commercially viable.

 

Source: International Transport Forum
Image: International Transport Forum