Electric Vehicles

Incentives for EVs, charging infrastructure key Q3 trend

Among the top electric vehicle policy trends in the third quarter of 2019 was financial incentives for electric vehicles and charging infrastructure, with the majority of incentives under consideration being rebate programs, a new report from the NC Clean Energy Technology Center said.

The report, “50 States of Electric Vehicles,” noted that Hawaii lawmakers enacted legislation creating a new rebate program for EV charging infrastructure in July 2019, while the Vermont General Assembly enacted a bill establishing a new incentive program for EVs last quarter.

In New Jersey, the Board of Public Utilities took steps toward developing an electric vehicle incentive program.

Meanwhile, several utilities have filed proposals for rebate programs, typically as part of broader transportation electrification initiatives.

Duke Energy has requested approval for charging station rebates in Indiana, Kentucky, North Carolina, and South Carolina, while Indiana Michigan Power has filed rebate proposals in both Indiana and Michigan.

(The American Public Power Association has partnered with Nissan to offer its member public power community across the U.S. exclusive rebates on the all-electric 2019 Nissan LEAF, through January 2, 2020).

Utilities proposing programs to address multiple charging types and locations

Another key EV policy trend in the third quarter cited by the center is that many of the utilities requesting approval for transportation electrification initiatives are proposing a portfolio of programs addressing multiple charging types (such as Level 2 or DC fast charging) and locations (such as single-family homes, multi-family dwellings, businesses, and workplaces).

“The majority of the residential and commercial programs under consideration take the form of incentive programs and new rate offerings, while the majority of the fast charging programs involve utility deployment or new rate designs to reduce the impact of demand charges,” the report’s executive summary said.

Duke Energy’s newly proposed pilot programs in Indiana and Kentucky include programs for fast charging, electric transit buses, residential charging, and commercial charging.

Recently approved programs in Washington, DC, Delaware, and Maryland also address several different charging segments, the center noted.

EV pilot projects

A number of utilities are proposing innovative electric vehicle pilot projects to demonstrate and study new technologies and applications, which the center listed as a third top policy development in the third quarter.

Dominion Energy Virginia requested approval to deploy a limited number of DC fast charging stations to study and support electrification of the rideshare segment, the report noted. A state commission order on Georgia Power’s integrated resource plan requires the utility to develop a pilot project that uses battery storage for a grid-connected charging system.

Meanwhile, as part of Oregon-based Portland General Electric’s transportation electrification plan, filed in September 2019, the utility indicated that it will be pursuing an electric truck demonstration charging sandbox.

Last quarter, the Utah Public Service Commission approved Rocky Mountain Power’s proposed project that will test a power balance and demand response system at a transit hub in Salt Lake City.

40 states, plus DC, took actions related to EVs

In the third quarter of 2019, 40 states plus DC took a total of 298 actions related to EVs, the center reported.

Of the 298 actions catalogued, the most common were related to financial incentives (75), followed by market development (58) and deployment (49).