« Big Victory: Minnesota's Landmark Clean Energy Standard Charts Course Beyond Dirty Energy | Main | Fighting Coal Down Under »

May 20, 2013

How Electric Vehicles That Feed the Grid Will Pay Off

Blog---100Just like the two-way street, car innovators are focusing more than ever on the two-way plug that could revolutionize cars' relationship with the grid. The idea is to give plug-in cars the ability to feed energy back into the grid when parked. And part of the vision includes small payments to people whose vehicles become energy providers when the grid is in need of balancing during peak hours. This innovation will be particularly useful for backing up energy sources like wind and solar that can vary by time of day or weather.

EV plug in2

Using 15 plug-in Mini E's donated by BMW, the idea is being explored by Prof. Willett Kepton of the University of Delaware. These days cars sit idle and unused for a large majority of their lives. Creating back-and-forth capabilities with the grid --
 and the home -- would sharply increase the car's efficiency and role in our lives while challenging the traditional energy provider and consumer relationship.

Dubbed the "cashback car," the consumer-friendly technology could make EVs even more appealing to people who are tired of burning funds at the gas pump. As Autoblog Green explains:

Kempton estimates that in the high-value grid markets, an EV at a charging point with the capability to charge or discharge at 10kW can generate $2,000 or more each year. It's a very appealing proposition to go on vacation while leaving your car at home in the garage generating a paycheck for when you return. And, over a typical 5-10 year ownership period, it's enough to pay for the cost of the battery and still provide you the benefit of EV motoring at its spectacular two- to three-cents-per-mile operating cost.

In this world, the rules of car ownership change dramatically. Drivers can quit oil, provide clean energy to the grid, and get paid for it.

-- Brian Foley


TrackBack URL for this entry:

Listed below are links to weblogs that reference How Electric Vehicles That Feed the Grid Will Pay Off:

User comments or postings reflect the opinions of the responsible contributor only, and do not reflect the viewpoint of the Sierra Club. The Sierra Club does not endorse or guarantee the accuracy of any posting. The Sierra Club accepts no obligation to review every posting, but reserves the right (but not the obligation) to delete postings that may be considered offensive, illegal or inappropriate.

Up to Top

Find us on Facebook Follow us on Twitter Rss Feed

Sierra Club Main | Contact Us | Terms and Conditions of Use | Privacy Policy/Your California Privacy Rights | Website Help

Sierra Club® and "Explore, enjoy and protect the planet"® are registered trademarks of the Sierra Club. © 2013 Sierra Club.
The Sierra Club Seal is a registered copyright, service mark, and trademark of the Sierra Club.