Energy usage attributable to electric vehicles could soar 1,700 percent by 2020, according to a report authored by utility consulting firm The Shpigler Group and released by the Utilities Telecom Council (UTC), the so-called "voice of critical infrastructure communications." Annual megawatt-hour (MWh) usage from plug-in vehicles could swell from only 146,000 in 2010 to 2.6 million by 2020, the report notes. This, according to UTC, raises a host of technological and operational issues for the nation's electric utilities, particularly when it comes to modernizing and upgrading the U.S.' dated infrastructure.
The report, "Gearing Up for Electric Vehicles: Tackling the EV Challenges to the Smart Grid," notes that the forecasted surge in plug-in vehicles could lead to a 61-fold annual reduction in CO2 emission. While that's a remarkable reduction, the report doesn't provide adequate info to determine if it's even remotely close to accurate.

UTC says that to accommodate this game-changing shift in electricity usage, a number of issues must be addressed, including improved battery performance, advancements in vehicle-to-grid technology that can utilize a vehicle's battery as a grid storage device and infrastructure innovations that support the peak load changes that plug-ins will undoubtedly introduce to the nation's grid. That's a lot of work that needs to be completed by 2020, but almost anything is possible, right?

Photo by Sebastian Blanco / Copyright ©2010 AOL

[Source: Utilities Telecom Council]


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