An electric vehicle (EV) driver in Ontario could recoup CA$8,400 (US$6,270) over a car’s lifetime by selling energy to businesses during daytime hours.
Canadian EV non-profit Plug’n Drive has published a report which considers subjects including the use of EV batteries as mobile energy storage units, the use of second-life EV batteries as back-up grid storage and the economic value of EV batteries to utilities and electric vehicle owners via their use in vehicle-to-grid (V2G) networks.
Ontario has an energy pricing structure which could benefit EV owners, according to the Plug’n Drive report. Time-of-use charges in the province mean consumers pay CA$101/MWh for electricity at night, versus up to CA$208 during daytime peak demand periods. An electricity rebate program, coupled with a planned federal Clean Fuel Standard could, said the non-profit, drive that nighttime charging cost down to zero.
Still some in the tank
Plug’n Drive cited analysis which showed the average EV has 220km – 36 kWh – of range left in the battery after the daily commute. That would mean a majority of Ontarian EVs had more than half their charge available when parked in front of the owners workplace, ready for use in vehicle-to-grid applications.
“Electric vehicles are not just cars,” said Marc Brouillette, principal consultant for Strategic Policy Economics, a Canadian consultancy which worked with Plug’n Drive on the report. “They are batteries on wheels that offer significant economic benefits to both Ontario’s electricity grid and EV drivers.”
Charging an EV at night and selling the electricity at a premium during the daytime, could see electric car owners reduce the net cost of their vehicles. After 13 years of use, most EVs retain 80% of their battery capacity, enabling owners to sell the battery on for use in grid scale storage. It has been estimated such battery sales could already enable drivers to recoup around 20% of the original purchase price of the battery.
Throw in the sale of power to utilities under time-of-use pricing regimes, according to Plug’n Drive, and the lifetime cost of owning an EV could be as much as 30% lower than the burden of an internal combustion engine car.
Workplaces prepared to commit to the cost of installing and operating bidirectional charging infrastructure at their premises – to enable them to use power from EV batteries – could end up paying 40% less for peak time power supplied by electric vehicles than they would pay to their utility, according to the report.
Plug’n Drive said, by 2030 around 18,000 EVs could participate in such a V2G scheme, leading to significant reductions in daytime energy use and increase in nighttime demand. On average, the report estimates, nighttime demand could rise by 665 MWh across the province while the daytime figure could decrease 565 MWh.
As a result, EVs would account for 164 GWh of annual charging demand, mostly at night. In return, the batteries would offer 140 GWh of annual power supply to help balance the grid, chiefly during the daytime. As daytime demand in Ontario is primarily met by natural gas fired generation, using EVs to reduce demand would drive down greenhouse gas emissions by an estimated 55 kilotons per year.
The report’s authors say EVs could offer as much as CA$38,000 in benefits over their lifetime, to their owners, businesses and the grid, with owners able to recoup up to half that figure when sale of the end-of-life battery is factored in. The load shifting and peak shaving services offered by V2G to utilities could offer benefits worth CA$129 million per year by 2035, added the report.
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This report ignores the main problems with Battery Powered EV’s:
1. High Initial Price (mostly due to Batteries)
2. High Battery Replacement Costs
Re-Cycling the Battery for residential Solar power storage and recouping some value is interesting like ALL Re-Cycling Efforts (common in the Metal Industry…. Iron, Aluminium, Copper etc..).
However, how would the EV Buyer benefit (assuming the aged Battery is still “alive” enough) if he/she does NOT require such a Battery…. If the EV Manufacturer “guarantees” buys-back at an attractive price ($19,000.. 50% of Savings of $38,000…???) then the EV Buyer would be assured of a “lower” Battery Replacement Cost.
However, the High Initial Cost is still a barrier.
CAV’s (Compressed Air Vehicles) overcome BOTH … a much lower Vehicle Initial Price (40-60% of Battery EV’s) and does not require any “Battery or Storage” Replacement” either.
Only drawback with CAV’s appears to be their lower Efficiencies. However, as the Charging Costs of EV’s is very low already … $360/yr (22,000km/yr; 36KWhr/220km; $0.10/KWhr) and CAV’s would be probably $500/yr…. would these “savings” in Energy Costs really be meaningful ??
Only question remaining is…. why are CAV’s not being offered today… (just like EV;s only 10 years back) by either modifying and injecting high pressure air into ICE (Internal Combustion Engines) or other brand new CA drives/engines.
None of these reports are worth much if the authors do not take the time to calculate the real costs.
Climate change, for one, is going to be a financial disaster. Are those costs ever considered when talking about EV’s.
Without those costs, and others, all this reporting is a waste of time.
Thanks for your comment bfearn,
I’m sorry you feel our reporting is a waste of time but we are grateful you have the faith our journalists have the talent to be able to calculate the exact financial costs of environmental breakdown, given that is a figure so many governments and international organizations have failed to successfully grapple with to date.
There are 2 reasons why I would not opt for this scheme and that is, Low–Battery Anxiety and Battery replacement cost:
1. Even though the Day-Time electricity tariff for the case under consideration is 106% of the Night-Time tariff, the Utility should under no circumstances buy back electricity at the same rate that they are selling it at that moment, as that would not be a sustainable economic model. If they would allow buying-back at 80% of the selling rate, the possible gain between buying and selling reduces to 65%.
2. Round trip battery efficiency, (typically in the order of 80%) requires that 25% more energy than sold must be bought. When the energy efficiency and the buy-back price is considered, possible gain by selling the energy in my battery would be about 32% and not 106%. When 35kWh is sold at 4c gain, $1.40 gain per day can be expected.
3. Is $1.40 per day worth the mental stress that I may not reach home with the balance of energy in the battery after my $1.40 sale for the day, because the intention is to recharge the battery at home tonight?
4. Even if it was possible to save $1.40 every day for 10 consecutive years, the total “savings” would amount to approximately $5100 over 10 years. The problem with this is that battery life expectancy reduces substantially when the battery is cycled every day as would be required for this scenario. When I weigh up the “savings” against battery replacement cost, I find the “savings” far too light and most probably not a saving at all.
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