May 26, 2020
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To help foster the construction of electric vehicle infrastructure nationwide while mitigating the electrical load implications on utility companies, the Smart Electric Power Alliance is launching a new “transportation electrification” program to bring utilities, regulators, automotive sector representatives, charging infrastructure providers, and other stakeholders together to discuss and find solutions to those challenges.

[Above photo by DDOT.]

“EVs simultaneously have the potential to significantly increase load and expand revenues for utilities, while also posing serious risks including distribution planning challenges, inadequate charging infrastructure, and higher rates for consumers if improperly managed,” noted Erika Myers, tapped by SEPA to serves as its principal of transportation electrification, in a March 12 statement. “Through strategic planning, we can mitigate the potential impacts of large-scale EV deployment and leverage these vehicles as grid assets.”

Photo of electric car charging by DDOT

“As we chart our course for the future, electrification will be an important part of our vehicle lineup,” added Steve Henderson, manager of vehicle electrification and policy at Ford Motor Co., which recently became a SEPA member. “By joining SEPA, we will be able to work together to support a growing vehicle-grid integration services market.”

Collaborative private sector efforts to coordinate EV infrastructure developed is being mirrored in the public sector, especially by the   “REV West Plan” launched almost two years ago by governors of seven western states to create a “regional electric vehicle” corridor comprised of more than 5,000 miles of highway across east-west Interstates 10, 40, 70, 76, 80, 84, 86, 90 and 94, and north-south Interstates 15 and 25.

And pre-dating the REV plan was the joint effort by the Washington, California, and Oregon that established the West Coast Green Highway coalition nearly a decade ago.

 

editor@aashto.org

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