(MENAFN) An analysis from UK-based think-tank Energy and Climate Intelligence (ECIU) revealed that UK drivers could potentially earn £6.5 billion (USD8 billion) by selling electricity back to the grid from their electric vehicle (EV) batteries during peak hours of electricity demand. The analysis was published ahead of the expected announcement of a Zero Emission Vehicle (ZEV) Mandate, a policy that would require car manufacturers to increase the proportion of electric cars they sell in the coming years. If the mandate follows the car industry's 'high' deployment scenario and encourages 'vehicle-to-grid' (V2G) technology, 13.5 million V2G-capable EVs could be available to sell electricity to the grid at times of peak demand by 2035, earning their owners almost £7.6 billion.
However, if the government continues with its current proposed targets and the rollout of V2G technology happens slowly, only 2.3 million V2G-capable EVs could be available by 2035, and their owners could earn £1.1 billion. This means a slow rollout of EVs could miss out on taking £6.5 billion off their energy bills. V2G technology allows electric cars to send energy back to the grid, enabling car owners to earn money by charging up cheaply overnight and selling it back at peak times, when electricity is more expensive.
The analysis found that by 2030, V2G technology could potentially provide 20 gigawatts of power, replacing 20 gas power plants at times of electricity peak demand. Cheaper renewable power will help to keep EV running costs well below that of petrol cars, but electric cars in turn can also support the grid during peak times. Transport analyst at ECIU, Colin Walker, said, "The potential is enormous, enabling drivers to make money simply by plugging in after a day at work. This small act in turn brings down the costs of running the grid, cutting everyone’s bills and reducing the quantity of gas we need to import."
Data from the Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders showed that EV sales in the UK in February increased by 18.2 percent year-on-year and are now the second-largest category of cars sold after petrol. According to a recent ECIU analysis, EVs are currently around 2.8 times cheaper to fuel than petrol cars. VW and Audi have announced plans to introduce V2G technology, with Hyundai currently trialing it in the Netherlands. The expected announcement of the ZEV Mandate on the government's 'Green Day' later this week will determine the future of EV deployment in the UK.
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