Sustainable Energy

Perhaps one of the biggest winners to the introduction of grid connected electric vehicles is the environment with the renewed ability to add large sustainable energy generation portfolios onto the electricity network. Currently there are some serious issues with the introduction of sustainable energy onto the grid, one of the most notable being the intermittency of such energy sources. Vehicle to grid technology allows demand management and smart grid strategy to come into play which in turn enables far more renewable energy to be placed on the grid.

This gives the electric vehicle user the option of running their electric car purely from clean green sustainable energy. With the many solar PV installations this becomes an attractive option for those commuting large distances to work every day, as they can drive off the stored energy of the sun. In this case, the grid acts as a transferal mechanism between generation points and load points over the network. Through financial incentives, energy can be transferred around the grid in an efficient manner which not only saves money for everyone, but also greatly reduces green house gases.

Solar PV

Solar PV

Solar Photovoltaic (PV) is becoming more economical by the day as technology increases and PV production costs come down. Government incentives and interest free loans to install solar PV are also being handed out in a bid to reduce greenhouse gases and improve long term national economic performance. This allows of course the ability to drive off your own electricity and through a vehicle to grid system.

Wind Energy

Wind energy in Australia will start to cause some problems as significant proportions of our energy come from wind farms. This is because wind is largely intermittent. In fact in some areas for example north of Perth, wind is actually stronger at night than in the day. This poses a significant demand management issue and energy storage options are often considered however too expensive to justify. If the utility pays for the use of electric vehicle storage through vehicle to grid connectivity, then more wind generation can be introduced onto the electricity grid.

Some houses even have their own small 300W wind turbines able to provide significant generation which can offset some of the household's energy use.

Other renewables such as wave energy, biomass, solar thermal and geothermal

These other forms of renewable energy generation function largely as base load energy supply so will benefit less from the vehicle to grid concept. They are however an important part of the energy mix and support other aspects of the grid such as high inertia required for system stability. Biomass seems to be more economically feasible on small scale projects at the fringe of the grid and wave energy is still under going development, however hopefully will become a future sustainable energy mix. Geothermal is a very promising sustainable energy generation mechanism which promises to offset some of our non renewable energy generation.