EV range anxiety - is Big Oil ready for the "volt-age" | RenewEconomy

EV range anxiety – is Big Oil ready for the “volt-age”

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Electric Vehicles will help lessen Australia’s dependence of fossil fuel imports, and provide cheaper and cleaner transport. But is the oil industry ready for this? Apparently not.

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We’ve all heard the talk about “range anxiety”, the apparently insurmountable fear by potential consumers that an electric vehicle won’t get them from Point A to Point B, and which is supposedly holding back the widespread uptake of EVs.

But what about range anxiety of another kind? Big Oil, it seems, can see the EV revolution on its radar, but still can’t figure out how far it is away, or what it should do about it. Denial is one popular option.

According to a new report by consultancy Deloitte, and presented to the oil and gas industry conference hosted by APPEA this week, nearly half of oil and gas companies are not preparing for the shift to EVs. They could be in for a shock.

“The underlying assumption of ever-increasing demand for crude oil due to an increasing appetite for transportation may soon stall,” Deloitte says in its report, “Enter the Volt-Age: Electric vehicle disruption of the oil and gas industry.”

“This is because of a new technology which offers superior qualities in all three dimensions of the energy trilemma – security of supply, affordability and environmental sustainability – the electric vehicle (EV).

“The EV is a game-changer in the evolution of both the energy and transport industries.”

The Deloitte report notes that the uptake of EVs could do wonders for Australia’s reliance on fuel imports, which as the federal government has finally admitted, is now perilously vulnerable to supply interruptions in the South China Sea.

This might be something that the federal government and the oil and gas industry might want to think about before it goes off drilling in places like the Great Australian Bight for new reserves.

Apart from the significant environmental issues, such reserves are likely to be costly. And the government’s proposed review of its fuel import problems made no mention of EVs, only suggesting it might contemplate EVs as a solution after an enquiry by RenewEconomy.

But at the AAPEA conference, Resources Minister Matt Canavan was still talking about finding oil locally, even though they are both expensive and hard to find.

One of the authors of the Deloitte report, Steve McGill, said EVs are an obvious alternative to oil imports, and he notes:

“All the countries that are looking to ban sales of cars with internal combustion engines are among the major oil importers,” McGill told RenewEconomy.

Perhaps that’s something that Australia should think about. Certainly the potential is there: The Australian Energy Market Operator has suggested half of all vehicles could be electric within 20 years.

McGill notes that the mining industry seems to be the most advanced when considering electric and automated vehicles, but the oil and gas sector was trailing badly. “Locally, everyone is focused on gas.”

Another consultancy, Accenture, agrees on the potential of EVs.

“Our reliance on fossil fuels makes Australia vulnerable to external price spikes and supply disruptions,” says Edgar Demuth who is a managing director within the Accenture resources business.

“Electric vehicles can help reduce this threat if the generation of electricity by renewable sources is extended.

“So the increase of electric vehicles needs to be accompanied by an increase in renewable energy generation to reduce the reliance on fossil fuels and the reliance on imports of fossil fuels to Australia.

“With a larger portion of renewable energy generated for transport purposes, electric vehicles can reduce the emissions that contribute to climate change and smog, improving public health and reducing ecological damage.”

In its report, Deloitte notes that the transportation sector is responsible for more than 55 per cent of the worldwide demand for petroleum products and demand for road transportation fuels accounts for 45 per cent of the global demand for oil.

But this graph below is interesting. It highlights how the big growth economies – particularly China and India – are looking to EVs for the future. In both countries, more than 85 per cent of consumers are showing an interest in EVs.

In many other countries, the interest is at 50 per cent or more. Those percentages will likely increase significantly as more lower-cost models become available, and the economics overwhelming trump internal combustion engine cars.

“It’s easy to see why EVs have not been high on oil executives’ radars,” the Deloitte report says.

“Representing less than two percent of global car sales today, EVs are barely visible on the road. This is set to change, and fast. Every major car manufacturer has outlined plans for electrification over the next decade.”

And just on that issue of range anxiety. Deloitte notes – as other have – that the average commuter trip for Australians is about 35kms. That equates to around 6.5kWh, according to their calculations, for the daily commute.

That is well within the range of models such as the Nissan Leaf and the new Tesla Model 3, not to mention the more luxury, and expensive vehicles with significantly bigger battery storage.

“While questions remain about remote EV deployments and long range distance requirements, the suitability of EVs for city fleet vehicles, buses, taxis and daily work and school commutes is clear,” the report says.

“Combined, personal vehicles and light duty commercial vehicles made up more than 90 per cent of the vehicle kilometres driven and over 75 per cent of fuel consumption in Australia in 2016.

“With the average Australian commute less than 35km/day return, a modern EV would be able to complete the commute using only 6.5kWh.

“For comparison, most second generation EVs, such as the 2019 Nissan Leaf, have a battery size of 60kWh, and the high-end Teslas exceeding 100kWh.

A Tesla Powerwall 2 home battery has 13.5 kWh in energy storage capacity. Put another way, each Tesla Model S has the equivalent of more than seven Powerwalls in the garage.”

The Deloitte report suggests that one of the problems holding back the oil and gas industry is the scale of the change that they must contemplate.

“Change will not come in the form of a one-for-one fuel switch from petrol to electricity, but rather through a fundamental re-imagining of the concept of transportation,” the report says.

“The challenges and opportunities of this major disruption are significant.

“With EV releases coming from every major car manufacturer, autonomous-EV trials underway throughout the world, and emissions and combustion engine ban legislation in the works in a number of cities and countries globally, the world sits on the cusp of a global transportation transformation that will impact all market segments and industries, including Australia’s LNG industry.”

And that is particularly the case given the interest in EVs from consumers in the Asia growth powerhouses.

“The EV opportunity is enormous – oil and gas operators must recognise this and should not ignore the rise of EVs,” the report’s authors say.

“They should use their massive competitive advantage in the form of large capital reserves, great technological prowess and their skills in managing large and risky capital projects and operations to get out in front of the unfolding energy and transport revolution.

“In today’s rapidly changing energy landscape, oil and gas companies must get into the driver’s seat if they want to be competitive in tomorrow’s energy economy.”

But will they? Part of the rhetoric of Big Oil about future transitions is that they don’t want to scare their investors, or more particularly the banks that would finance their projects.

It was interesting to note that in response to the survey’s question about impacts of the widespread adoption of EVs, only two per cent suggested stranded assets. Now, that is being hopeful.


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  1. juxx0r 2 years ago

    Also people have had a guts full of petrol price manipulation at the pump.

    • Ren Stimpy 2 years ago

      I was headed down to the servo the other day and I could see from a few blocks away the fuel prices were $1.25l

      Then that 80’s song Iran by the band Trump Of Seagulls started playing on the car radio and the fuel prices jumped up to $1.43l

      • Nick Kemp 2 years ago

        Its $1.50 in Tasmania

        • John Norris 2 years ago

          You’re lucky. It’s $2.51 here in Italy (1.60 euro)

    • Miles Harding 2 years ago

      Another way to get the “EV grin”!

      It’s now a source of amusement watching the cave men (and women) queue for their dinosaur juice fix on monday nights.

    • solarguy 2 years ago

      Once they get established, they could do the same thing as the FF industry.

  2. Chris Drongers 2 years ago

    Teslas now circumnavigate Australia without problems. See the Facebook Tesla pages. Electric car fuel costs are half or less than petrol, nothing if charged from your own rooftop solar (a typical 6kW PV wpuld generate 24 to 60kWhr/day, enough to run the house (10kWhr) and run an electric car for 100km). I could be facetious and say the the current Fed Australian gov hoping ev’s don’t get traction before next election, or that their electoral extinction will be when the LNP hits the EV windscreen and their RWNJ rump smashes their (floundering) policy brain

    • Ren Stimpy 2 years ago

      Then engage windscreen washer-wipers.

    • mick 2 years ago

      bigger roo bar

    • solarguy 2 years ago

      Sorry Chris, you will never get 60kwh/day from a 6kw system.

      • Chris Drongers 2 years ago

        Sadly solarguy is right and I have badly over-estimated the yield. The best daily yield from 6kW of optimally oriented PV on the Perth-Sydney line is about 37 kWhr/day (in January) down to about 17 kWhr/day in June (pvwatts.nrel.gov)). My apologies.
        This still leaves 27-7kWhr/day for the electric car or 100km/day in summer down to 30 km/day in the darkest month of winter).
        Sadly, our cites are so spread out that even 100 km/day round trip commuting would still be needed from the outlying suburbs to the CBD in the four biggest capitals. To go self-powered EV this minority of commuters (by far the greatest fraction of workers live and work in roughly the same part of the extended city, if not the same suburb) would be advised to drive to a train station and take that to the city (buses would be too slow).

        • The_Lorax 2 years ago

          I try to charge my PHEV from solar as much as I can. I probably manage it 80% of the time, but it only has a 12kWh battery that I can trickle change with a standard 10A power point. I wouldn’t like to fully charge a 100kWh Tesla from domestic rooftop solar. It would take a week!

          • Peter Campbell 2 years ago

            “I wouldn’t like to fully charge a 100kWh Tesla from domestic rooftop solar. It would take a week!”
            If your Tesla were run right down, it sounds like putting 12kWh from your PV would be sufficient for the next day. It does not need to be full to work.
            In a normal driving pattern you are unlikely to fully discharge that Tesla and need to fully charge it immediately after, except when away from home on a long trip. If your home PV is enough to top up the PHEV’s 12kWh battery enough to cover nearly all your driving, then the bigger Tesla battery will just give you a bigger buffer. With EVs think ‘top up’ not ‘fill up’.

          • The_Lorax 2 years ago

            Yes fair point. I guess my point is, if you want to charge an EV from home using domestic rooftop solar you have to trickle charge over many hours. Not much point using a 22kW Tesla home charger when your PV system can only deliver 4-5kW maximum.

          • Peter Campbell 2 years ago

            I think something people will learn as they adopt EVs is that they wasted their money on installing a high power home charging outlet. I have been charging electric cars with modest battery capacities at home since 2009, initially a DIY conversion and later commercial EVs. I have never used more than 10A charging at home. That is, 2.4kW, the power available from an ordinary ubiquitous power point. This is plenty for local travel but much faster charging is important for charging on extra-urban trips away from home.
            A really useful style of home charger (actually an EVSE that talks to your home meter box) is one that can vary the charging rate to your vehicle to match the available surplus from home PV so exporting your PV output for a possibly low feed-in tariff is minimised and storage for later use driving is maximised.
            As car batteries get bigger, the need to keep them charged to 100% at every opportunity diminishes. Indeed, a good pattern might be to charge from your home PV to 100% when possible but only to (say) 80% from the mains. That way, you always leave some room to soak up some PV surplus if you have it.

          • The_Lorax 2 years ago

            Yep, I’ve been looking for the same thing. Something that switches on my car charger when I’m exporting more than (say) 2kW. For now I just do it the manual way. If the sun is out and my PV is producing more than 3kW I charge the car.

          • Mike Westerman 2 years ago

            You should be able to use the devices designed to do that for HW – Paladin is NZ brand but there was article on Oz version in RE 26 April – solar diverters

          • Peter Campbell 2 years ago

            There was a Fully Charged episode on such an EVSE. As you probably know, a wall box or the lump in an EVSE cable, tells the car how much current it is allowed to take via a pilot signal. Usually that depends on the type of plug attached; the EVSE ‘says’ ‘I have a 15A plug attached so, car charger, don’t take more than 15A or I’ll assume there is a fault condition and shut you down’.
            The automatic device I am thinking of can send a pilot signal telling the car to take only 6A (1.44kW) or 10A (2.4kW) or 15A (3.6kW) according to the amount of surplus generation you have. It talks to your meter or inverter as well, not just the vehicle. I think this automatic solar diverter type device may be available locally. I’ll ask a friend.
            Manually switchable ones exist too. Eg. A portable 15A EVSE with a 15A plug but a switch to manually limit to 6A or 10A if that is preferred to 15A. The latter manual sort are certainly available locally. If you are not producing a lot of excess and you are not in a hurry to charge, the 6A/1.4kW setting could be good.

    • Kelvin Mace 2 years ago

      Yes, sorry, no way a 6kW array gets 60kWh. We have a 10kW array on one of our buildings with almost perfect facing, and our best day as 65.02kWh in NC, a very sunny state.

  3. Joe 2 years ago

    Our / Australia’s ‘EV Champion’ the Kelly has EV anxiety fullstop. Never mind this idea ‘range anxiety’.

  4. Farmer Dave 2 years ago

    As a former oil industry employee, I have little faith in the industry’s ability to adapt until severely threatened by the electrification of light vehicle and short distance ground transport. Some of the problems they are likely to face will be subtle: refineries mainly produce gasoline, jet fuel and diesel as different “cuts” from the wide range of hydrocarbons found in crude oil. When EVs really take off, refineries will see significant reductions in their demand for gasoline and diesel, but no reduction in the demand for jet fuel. Current Australian refineries (those we have left) could struggle to make such a changed product slate without large capital investments in new refining equipment.

    If the new product slate is also less profitable than the old one, which I expect to be the case, justifying the capital for the upgrades may be very difficult, leading to more refinery closures.

    • Roger Brown 2 years ago

      Jet Fuel will still join the dying Gas/oil Mobs down the line . They have a small electric plane flying (Testing) .

      • Joe 2 years ago

        Solar Impulse 1 and 2 pioneered the way.

    • maxlyrical 2 years ago

      Siemens and Rolls Royce are currently partnering with Boeing to produce an electric passenger jet.
      Also, there’s an all electric plane that takes day trippers to Rottnest Island.
      Pipistrel produces at least 3 models of light electric aircraft.

  5. Peter Campbell 2 years ago

    The NRMA is putting in 50kW DC fast chargers at 150km max. intervals on major routes throughout NSW and the ACT for free use by members and a fee to non-members.

    • Connor 2 years ago

      RAC is doing something similar as well, from Perth to Margret River/Busselton. Pretty cool, but it’d be even better if it could go all the way around WA, as I find myself doing lots of regular trips Perth to Esperance, a complete EV would not be suitable for me unfortunately. PHEV it is for now!

      • Peter Campbell 2 years ago

        We have a PHEV Holden Volt and a Mitsubishi iMiEV. With those two vehicle, all our local driving is electric. If we go for a trip out of town we take the Volt. Usually while away we can arrange for slow overnight charging so at least a bit of the next day’s driving is from the mains rather than the on-board petrol generator. Since we bought it used at the start of this year our average is 2.2l/100km and we have had 4 partial petrol trips away from home in Canberra – a week at the NSW south coast, up to Sydney and back in a day for a meeting, a week away through northern Victoria, and a day bushwalking far enough away in the south of the ACT that it was electric there and petrol back.

        • PeterA 2 years ago

          Since I bought my volt second hand 9 months ago I’ve used about 35 litres of petrol, and driven 10,000km (commute to work every day in the Melbourne CBD).

          Most of that petrol was on trips to see friends in Philip island.

          With help from said friends I do roughly 100km on electric (half charge while at their house) and 120km on petrol.

          The volt really is the best car for Australia. Pity the retail price was so astronomical at launch. (It was the opposite of affordable, better than a model S, but still nothing spectacular).

          • Francis Young 2 years ago

            What was the retail cost of the electricity over that nine months, Peter? I’m assuming about 80% efficiency of chagring vs discharging. Is that reasonable? Just trying to get a handle on the running costs.

          • Peter Campbell 2 years ago

            It is a while since I have bothered to do the sums with precision because our electric cars worked out to be cheaper to run than any available petrol car.

          • PeterA 2 years ago

            Hi Francis, I haven’t renegotiated my electricity rates, so it is roughly 50% more expensive than it could be.

            And the TLDR (for this long comment) is even when I’m paying 50% more than I should, running costs are still approx half the best case scenario for a fuel car. In practice, it’s probably even cheaper than that.

            Long form:

            But my electricity is 21cents per KW/hr. (I leave home at 7am, which is when “off peak” ends, off peak rates are about 13cents per KW/hr if I switched to it)

            I average 7km per KW/hr (over winter this goes to 6km, over summer it goes up to 8.5km)

            Charging efficiency is over 80%, and I time my charge to end at 6:45am, so that the battery needs less heating in winter.

            Overall my 45km round trip commute is always fully electric in my car.

            So I expend about 7kw/hr per day commuting, which comes to maybe 8kw/hr of charging, or $1.60 per day (at my poor rates).

            Origin energy have a deal where I can charge any amount I want for $1 a day (flat rate), but I don’t think it works out for me if I can get off peak rates.

            All up, given current fuel prices, you will beat my (lazy expensive) commute cost if your car gets about 2 litres per 100km during stop start traffic.

            I think my dad hypermiles (read: drives like an old man, slow accelerating 10 under the limit, never faster than 80) his Prius C, not in stop start traffic and can achieve 2.5 litres per 100.

            I don’t think it’s really feasible to beat the efficiency of fully electric cars. In the real world they have basically half the running cost.

            Also remember, that my *worst case* fuel efficiency is me running on petrol. I get about 6litres per 100km at highway speeds (not including the 60km I get fully electric before I cut to fuel). So my worst case is typically pretty close to the best case scenario for most cars. It basically can never be *worse* than a petrol car.

            The Volt is a unicorn.

      • maxlyrical 2 years ago

        Have a look at plugshare.com Connor.
        The WA Tesla club are currently getting chargers installed statewide on a 100km grid. Statewide trips are already common.
        But you do need to be prepared to check the wildflowers occasionally.

    • Francis Young 2 years ago

      “Free” for how long?

      • Peter Campbell 2 years ago

        I attended a presentation by a person from NRMA. He did not say as far as I recall. The implication was that they would be free at least until EVs on the road had reached such numbers that the business case for commercial fast DC chargers was there. The purpose of the NRMA chargers was to break the chicken and egg problem – that people would not buy EVs until they could do long extra urban trips and businesses would not put in commercial fast charging until there were enough EVs to make it worthwhile financially.
        He did understand that in practice most charging would happen at domestic premises, most driving involves short trips and most 2 car households could have an EV of modest range to replace the car that never leaves town. However, most people seem to have a fixation on infrequent long trips when considering a vehicle to buy. The NRMA network is intended to allow long trips by vehicles such as the Hyundai Ionique.

  6. Ian 2 years ago

    Queensland is the sunshine state, very easy to plonk countless solar farms not far from habitated areasbut what we now need is storage . Lots of it . And EV are the ideal form of storage for this state. It’s time to heavily subsidise EV. For starters all busses should be changed to electric; BEV. Secondly, we should be removing luxury tax and import duties on EV, these sorts of vehicles have no cylinders and thus should attract the lowest registration fees. For a limited time, say three years decent subsidies should be offered on the purchase price of EV such as $5000 to $10 000 dollars.

    We really need to get this EV ball rolling.

    • Ian 2 years ago

      Considering that the federal government budget is $3.3 billion for the Bruce highway upgrade and some sections of these upgrades cost $100 million/km, you would think that finding $100 million for EV subsidies would not be difficult. $100 million a year for 3 years , given as $5000 per vehicle would ensure 20 000 EV every year for 3years on Queensland’s roads.

      • Greg Hudson 2 years ago

        The impending (1st July 2018) FIT increase in Victoria from 11.3c/kWh to 29c using a ‘fair’ method to calculate is what I’m waiting for. Actually, no, I’m not waiting, I’m installing a new 4.8kW PV array before July, and hope for the best. (Cost is around AU$4500). Still negotiating with suppliers…
        The ‘scaling back’ of the FIT was grossly unfair to PV array owners who missed out on the Premium FIT, however that was over the top at 66c/kWh.

  7. Gavin 2 years ago

    The problem is the government is addicted to revenue from the petrol pump and can’t see how they can tax Electric vehicles

    • Ian 2 years ago

      You are probably right about such a knee-jerk response but we should not let it rest at that. One thing government needs is voter support and BS arguments like loss of tax on fuel should be costing lawmakers votes big time. They can always tax electricity more considering that motorists are the ones using electricity. An even better argument for a direct tax on electricity is that the biggest consumers are foreign owned businesses and refineries, the very entities that have escaped the usual tax raising endeavours.

      This is the one market where control on the targets for taxation can be obtained. The small users of electricity like the poor and pensioners could be exempt and larger and larger users could see the tax increase.

      • Greg Hudson 2 years ago

        ”They can always tax electricity more considering that motorists are the ones using electricity.”
        There is a flaw in your plan… Many EV owners will no doubt either BE installing solar on their household roofs, or have already done so.
        I’m installing PV panels on my roof, well before my model 3 gets built !
        Once it is all up and running, I’ll be paying bugger all tax on electricity… They even lose out on the GST as well…

        • Ferris B 2 years ago

          The general opinion is the fed government are slow in reacting to the looming EV revolution, that is pretty evident but one thing the inner workings have in mind is a distance tax, it’ll be a few years before it gets introduced but it’s a sure bet it will.

          • Greg Hudson 2 years ago

            Tax on electricity a distance tax…

          • Peter Campbell 2 years ago

            distance x efficiency, just like the fuel excise now. If you choose a vehicle with lousy fuel economy, then you are welcome to pay more tax as a consequence of the greater litres per 100km. You are polluting more, require more resources generally, so you pay more.

          • Ferris B 2 years ago

            There is no way to completely monitor electricity going in to EVs seperately from that being used for non EV purposes,

    • maxlyrical 2 years ago

      And that’s exactly why the govt (whichever govt) are unlikely to incentivise EV’s.
      Taxes and the big FF lobby boys with brown paper bags…

      • liberiusmax 2 years ago

        They could just double or triple the registration fees. Plenty of ways for Governments to tax people.

  8. Ross Flint 2 years ago

    Here is an informative address given by Tony Seba – March 13, 2018 Amsterdam, Netherlands

    rEVolution 2018 / Tony Seba

    How Silicon Valley is making Oil, Nuclear, Natural Gas, Coal, Electric Utilities and Conventional Cars Obsolete by 2030
    “We are on the cusp of the most radical transformation in energy in a century. Exponentially improving technologies such as solar, electric vehicles, and autonomous (self-driving) cars are turning the industrial-era energy industry on its head and making the gasoline vehicle obsolete.”

    The address focuses on the speed which (he believes) the transition to EV’s will be a major disruptor to modes of transport and how it will cripple the oil and gas industry. This has relevance to this article by Giles.

    Tony Seba’s work focuses on clean energy, entrepreneurship, market disruption, and the exponential technology trends, business model innovation, and product architecture innovations that are leading to the disruption of some of the world’s major industries, such as energy, transportation, infrastructure, finance, and manufacturing.

    • Jolly Roger 2 years ago

      Interesting predictions. I think his expectations around numbers of EV’s are way out as he doesn’t take into account how our society and economy are really structured. For example, all the schools open at about the same time and close at about the same time. If that persists then most of those families need a car to ferry the kids to and from school at the same time. Likewise with majority of workplaces opening and closing at the same times. Freeways will stay busy at those times because of all the simultaneous trips and all of thise EVs that cant be used during the day ( when self driving ) will still need to be parked waiting for return trips.

      • Mike Westerman 2 years ago

        I think the element missing from your analysis is that the onset of autonomous vehicles and very cheap energy will change our societies as much as the internet have. When I was in Grade 1 I was sent to a school a few k out of town by taxi becoz both parents worked and taxis were cheap. When we have autonomous vehicles parents will be able to use an app to say their kids are ready – an AEV will simply reroute to pick their kids up with others. Regular shopping will be delivered with the post in an AEV. People will use “buses” because 10 seater AEVs will be circulating thru the suburbs and ordered by app to reroute to pick you up from your door. No waiting or running for the bus, so people will use the service. There will be many similar examples of changed behaviour.

        • Jolly Roger 2 years ago

          One thing i wondered about this – will children say younger than 14 be allowed to travel in autonomous vehicles unaccompanied by an adult ? Or will we make laws to regulate this sort of issue ?

          • Mike Westerman 2 years ago

            God I hope not! I was 5yo when taking the local taxi. The following year I walked with my siblings 1km to school. Our streets are much safer now than then!

  9. Phil NSW 2 years ago

    Have you done the calculation of how much more electricity has to be added to the grid for say each 20,000 new EV? Then how much electricity is required to convert to 100% EV’s? At the moment, the power required for the introduction of any new EV’s are ahead of the rate new RE is introduced to the grid. Do you know approximately at what rate new EV’s would outstrip new RE and therefore require FF generation to power the cars?

    • Peter Campbell 2 years ago

      Put one kilowatt of PV on your roof and the grid will see enough renewable electricity to run a car.

    • PeterA 2 years ago

      None. Controlled load powerpoints would be all you need.

      Our grid is constructed to account for loads typically three times larger than our average daily peak.

      If you have externally controlled load powerpoints you could easily double the states power usage (especially overnight) to easily charge almost any number of electric vehicles.

      If they are controlled load then just shut them off if we get close to our limit. And turn them back on when the peak draw is passed.

      • Chris Drongers 2 years ago

        Following the Tesla currently on a Round Australia trip. Got to Fitzroy Crossing where the charging station had tripped the breaker. Flic the breaker back in and prepare for the afternoon session at the legendary Fitzroy Hotel.
        Fitzroy Crossing has only about 6MW of generation available so while charging the Tesla is not an issue, plugging in several Tesla semitrailers would stress the supply.

        • Ferris B 2 years ago

          As long as Horizon power are planning ahead (which they are) this will not be a problem

        • PeterA 2 years ago

          I don’t think controlled load powerpoints are quite the same thing as medium-haul Tesla semi’s.

          One of those charges overnight and if it doesn’t charge for all 8 hours on a blistering summer it will still do the daily commute. The other is a commercial vehicle that requires a full charge to perform as required.

          I wouldn’t be recommending putting the semi’s on the controlled load circuit.

          I rather expect if Tesla semi’s come to Australia, it would be alongside Tesla infrastructure to service their charging needs. (Big battery on a controlled load perhaps? Suck up every unused kW from that 6MW plant and discharge into trucks as they need it). Same wires, just more efficiency (IE load shifting).

          But that’s for Tesla to figure out.

          • Chris Drongers 2 years ago

            Agree with PeterA and FerrisB that the mechanics of charging big commercial vehicles on small islanded town grids is something that Horizon Power and the trucking companies will sort out soon enough. But we should (myself included) stop thinking that ‘electric semitrailer’ is a synonym for ‘Tesla’. BYD, BMW and many others will be selling 0.5-1MWhr battried heavy trucks soon enough. The fast chargers (multiples at many/most locations) will have to suit a large number of different truck models.

  10. Francis Young 2 years ago

    85% in China and India are “interested” in EVs. What does that even mean? “Interest” doesn’t generate the kind of electricity we would need to power 10 million cars, even if people were able to afford them.

    Rooftop solar is not free. Evan after a taxpayer handout, over its practical life of 10-15 years it barely breaks even, and that is without the burden of a couple of family cars needing juice. Consumers would be better off paying a lower unit price per KWh for electricity, and that means generating it by the cheapest reliable technologies.

    Companies like AGL are virtue signalling by closing baseload power stations and hanging out like Elon Musk for government handouts to fund partial replacement with intermittent sources.

    For EVs to become viable, electricity to charge them must be cheap and abundant. And that will not happen if we don’t use traditional technologies such as hydro, coal, and nuclear power. Wind and solar simply won’t get you there.

    I would be delighted if an engineer would disprove this, and show the maths that gets a State’s households, businesses, and EVs economically and reliably energised any other way.

    • Peter Campbell 2 years ago

      What nonsense. For a start, PV works fine for a lot longer than 10-15 years and plenty of engineers and businesses have worked out how to profit from solar farms operated without subsidy – power purchase agreements and surrendered RECs for the ACT, for example.
      I have been driving electric cars for 9 years now. Also how long I have had a 1.8kW PV system, small by current standards. As chance would have it, the output of that PV system has almost perfectly matched the consumption of our vehicles over the last 9 years. All our household’s local driving in two cars is electric.
      “For EVs to BECOME viable”? They already are. Our EVs are cheaper to run than any available petrol car. I have never spent more than $25K on a car. Maintenance has been negligible.

      • Mike Westerman 2 years ago

        Peter some caution on trying to understand what rants from Francis mean – he lives in a world of non-sequiturs and foggy notions. His entreaty to engineers to explain ring hollow given his lack of comprehension that there is no action without interest, no interest without awareness. Fortunately out in the real world, there are those like yourself who live it, rather than rant about it!

    • Phil NSW 2 years ago

      Hi Francis
      Could you just google how many unplanned trips our fleet of coal fired power stations have had this year and the effect on grid stability these trips have caused. Whilst you are there do the same for solar and wind generation. You then may wish to amend your post.

    • PeterA 2 years ago

      Here’s a fun fact about Victoria’s electricity grid.

      It is capable of providing 3 times the average daily peak energy draw.

      All so that it can meet peak requirements on the three days of the year that electricity use soars to brownout levels.

      We have SO MUCH electricity capacity it just isn’t funny. If we had electric car chargers in everyone’s house with controlled load PowerPoints on everyone’s smart metering, we could easily triple our state electricity usage and not have to build a single new powerplant. (Contingent on cutting off the cars when we need excess capacity to meet other demands, mostly aircon).

      We obviously need more green generation. But the best thing about electric cars is even if you use the worst Brown coal now, your cars co2 efficiency only gets better as they increase efficiency of your plants you draw from!

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