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Table of Contents

Host: Rue Phillips
Guest: Paul Vosper | CEO | JuiceBar
Category: ⚡ Renewable Energy

Podcast’s Essential Bites:

[3:31] “There is vehicle to grid (V2G) and vehicle to building (V2B). They're used synonymously often, but it's really two different technologies. One is where you're feeding power directly into the grid, and using that to offset peak demand on the grid. And then there's vehicle to building, which is where you're supplying batteries from the cars, somewhat similar to solar or static battery storage, but it's going directly into the building and being used for building usage. So the likely scenario is that vehicle to building becomes more common first, because the vehicle to grid is going to require some technology from the utility companies and so that's probably going to come a little bit later.”

[4:13] “Both of them offer a tremendous promise, which is that you can use the batteries in the car to either offset demand in the building, or to offset demand on the grid. […] And the promise of being able to use the EV batteries is to think of them like a sponge. They sponge up energy when the grid is very quiet, so after 11 o'clock at night, they deploy energy into the grid. When there's peak demand they suck up again excess energy from renewables and stay off the grid in the evening rush. […] Same thing in a building. […] The average office building has a peak demand somewhere […] around 7:00 in the morning until about 9:30 in the morning. And if you can pull power from the cars and reduce the demand on the building, effectively it saves about 50 to 70% of the building's electricity bill. So big cost savings to the building owner and a more efficient use of the grid.”

[6:12] “We're really just a couple of years away from starting to see this deployed. There have been some pilot studies out there. Already commercial EVs, particularly the school buses, are able to do either rudimentary vehicle to building or more sophisticated vehicle building. But it's really nothing that really affects the owner of the car in terms of complexity. You plug the car in and the charger or the building management or the energy management system, or the utility directs power where it's needed or puts power back into the car. Obviously, the driver is going to have to opt in. […] So there has to be economic incentives for the drivers. Some of the pilots we've seen, there was one in Copenhagen a couple years ago […] and the drivers were effectively getting free electricity for the year during the pilot program by making their batteries available to the Copenhagen grid. So the promise to the driver is something like free parking, or free electricity, or getting paid for deliver[ing] those kilowatts or using your car as a source of revenue or a further cost reduction.”

[7:40] “You've got a fairly sizable battery in say a school bus or a municipal bus. And […] one of the things that people are looking at is using these buses to improve the [climate] resiliency of the community. And so, if you look at what happened in Louisiana, I think it's fair to say that more people have been affected and died, unfortunately, from the after effects of the storm, then the storm itself, and that's largely getting the grid back up and running again. So you could have refrigeration if you're storing medicines, or cooling if you're elderly in particular. So the buses can be moved to where they're needed, plugged into a building, whether that's a hospital or a command center. They can also be used as mobile mash units. […] So rather than having to bring people out of a disaster area at least the first responders can get there and provide basic triage there. So there's very exciting things around thinking about using these batteries effectively as mobile power generators and bringing those generators to where they're needed most urgently.”

[16:38] “California already has an EV rate. If you allow the utility to delay charging till after midnight, when the grids quiet, you pay a substantially lower electric rate per kilowatt hour rate for that than you do for your normal residential. In the UK […] we have time of use charging and years ago they started putting clocks and timers on dryers. Most of the UK knows that you're closing the dryer, and you set it to go off at midnight, because you benefit from a much cheaper rate. So we know it works in different applications.”

[28:47] “We still have to solve the basic problem of getting people into EVs over gasoline and diesel and getting people off of the range anxiety problems and so on. When somebody asked me about vehicle to grid, I said, look, it's a nice thing to have if you're an EV driver, because it's potentially a way for you to make some money off of your vehicle. But the reality is we've still got a long way to go to convince people to adopt EVs. It's moving fast, and it's moving faster than I thought. […] But the hurdle is charging. It's the range anxiety. Once you adopt an EV, you start driving EVs, you begin to realize that range anxiety is more of a fear than a reality. But if you gave me an unlimited budget, I would spend it all on educating the consumer on why you should go to EVs versus gasoline and diesel. We'll worry about V2G when it comes.

[30:00] “I think one of the problems that we've created for ourselves in the way we design the grid is that we have 250 utilities of size in this country, we have 50 different regulators, there's effectively four separate grid infrastructures. And so vehicle to grid is going to require the utility companies to figure out the technology to allow that to happen. […] I think it's really a question of figuring out how to make the hardware and the software, both at the vehicle side, the charger and the utility side all talk to each other. And that's a synchronization type problem. Which is why I think the first part of vehicle to grid is effectively vehicle to building. It's a much simpler format, you're taking power out of the vehicles, putting it into a building, you don't need the grid to cooperate to do that. But the true vehicle to grid comes later, I think.”

Rating: ⚡⚡⚡⚡

🎙️ Full Episode: Apple | Spotify
🕰️ 33 min | 🗓️ 01/03/2022
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