• Oct 28th 2012 at 7:15PM
  • 6
A California appellate court judge has dismissed a lawsuit against California Public Utilities Commission (CPUC) for its legal settlement earlier this year granting energy utility NRG more than $102.5 million to install electric vehicle charging networks in the state. Ecotality, an electric vehicle supply equipment company, had filed suit in May challenging CPUC for settling with NRG and its subsidiary Dynergy for its part in the 2000-2001 energy scandal. California went after Dynergy for doing something similar to the infamous and now defunct Enron – dramatically overcharging Californians for electricity. A background article on all this is available here.

Ecotality's suit called into question the legal reasoning behind CPUC's decision to hold Dynergy accountable for overcharging consumers by taking away competitive and fair opportunities from other EVSE suppliers. Ecotality filed suit to stop the state from allowing out-of-state utility NRG to install its eVgo charger network and create a monopoly. The CPUC settlement allows NRG to install 200 480-volt fast chargers, wire 1,000 locations to be EV ready and set up the groundwork for up to 10,000 Level 2 charging stations. Most of the fast chargers will be set up between San Francisco and Los Angeles.

Under the NRG charging network, charging stations will be set up on a pay-as-you-go basis for the first five years. For fast chargers, users will be billed a cap of $10 to charge during off-peak hours and $15 for on-peak hours. Elsewhere, NRG has been able to charge users a monthly subscription fee, like eVgo is doing in Texas.

California doesn't have many fast chargers in place right now, and EV advocates have been clamoring for more installations of DC fast and Level 2 public chargers. Despite the dismissal, Ecotality won't be leaving the state over it. "While we are disappointed and disagree with the outcome of this case, we continue to see great opportunity for Ecotality and the whole of the electric vehicle industry in California," the company said in a statement.

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    • 1 Second Ago
      • 8 Months Ago
      It's the 18 month waiting before another company can install their charger once NRG wires the location that I have a problem with, and makes it sound like a backroom deal between buddies happened.
      • 8 Months Ago
      Ecotality has been promising Fast Charge in California for two year. WHERE ARE THEY? Step up to the plate and get to work and stop whining about competition.
      Turbo Froggy
      • 8 Months Ago
      Whoohoo!! No excuses now NRG. Start deploying those DC Fast chargers as fast as possible. California is SOOOO far behind Oregon and Washington on the DC Fast Charge rollout it is just ridiculous. We just completed a 574 mile trip from Washington to Oregon and back, left Friday got back Sunday in our Leaf. This would be IMPOSSIBLE in California. Time to get crackalackin NRG, hire American workers to install those great Areoviroment Made in the USA DC Fast chargers and get them in the ground ASAP!!
      • 8 Months Ago
      This is truly sad. Generally, when you're punishing a company for taking advantage of customers, you don't hand them a monopoly. California should have gotten a financial judgement against Dynergy, and then used those funds to buy chargers from other companies such as Ecotality.
      • 8 Months Ago
      I still wanna know if they are going to be ChadeMo, SAE, or both.
        Nick Kordich
        • 8 Months Ago
        It looks like CHAdeMO-only for both companies at this point. NRG/eVgo: https://www.evgonetwork.com/the-evgo-network/ Ecotality: http://www.blinknetwork.com/chargers-commercial-dc-fast.html One thing that surprised me was that it looks like Blink CHAdeMO stations don't have J1772 chargers. I expected them for backward compatibility, then I realized they didn't want a slow-charging EV parked in the way of one that would pay $15 for a 15 minute charge. If that's the case, I wonder if they would avoid installing a J1772 nearby, seeing as it might be competition for the more profitable fast charger.
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