Canadian utility company Nova Scotia Power is launching an electric vehicle smart-charging pilot program for household customers. For a profit of $150, approximately 100 homeowners across the province of Nova Scotia can be part of the smart-charging initiative. The program brings together renewable energy generation, EV charging and integrated monitoring technology. In return, for two years, the utility gets full control of the charger.
The program works in two stages. To start, customers pay $350 for the purchase and installation of a ChargePoint Home Flex EV smart charging system. Next, they have the option to enroll in a two-year pilot, during which Nova Scotia Power controls when the EV is charged, with the guarantee that the vehicle will always be fully powered in the morning. In exchange for pilot participation, the homeowner will get a $500 incentive, meaning they are ultimately paid $150 on top of getting the charger.
“We hear time and again how electric vehicle owners wished they could charge up their EV when the wind is blowing or when the sun is shining with clean, carbon-free electrons,” says Jérémie Bernardin, president of the Electric Vehicle Association of Atlantic Canada. “The data collected from smart-grid pilot programs like these have the potential to set the stage for those exact ideas.”
The Smart Grid Nova Scotia program is one of several pilots that have been rolled out across Canada to test how EV charging may be leveraged to encourage more efficient energy consumption and clean energy generation. What makes it unique is that it also compensates EV owners for their valuable data.
“The objective of the program really is to demonstrate the benefits that distributed energy sources can offer the utility and the customers,” says Sanjeev Pushkarna, senior program manager of Smart Grid Nova Scotia in an interview with Electric Autonomy Canada. “Our role is to support our customers in the way they would like to use energy. We’ve surveyed our customers and they say they are interested in electric vehicle charging and they say they are interested in batteries, so that’s one thing we are trying to do: make these technologies more accessible.”
The goal of adding energy storage and green generation capabilities to smart EV charging is to offset the increased consumption demand and actually lower overall energy costs. Battery storage units will add to savings by powering homes during peak times.
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