Plymouth City Council has announced a partnership with E-Flex, a Cisco-led vehicle-to-grid demonstration project, to trial using V2G with its fleet of electric vehicles.
The authority has set the goal of being carbon neutral by 2030, so says using V2G technology to make EVs more practical and commercially viable is part of a broader local strategy.
The council’s own fleet has six EVs available for day-to-day employee business travel around the city. The trial will see the council’s existing fleet of Nissan Leafs equipped with bidirectional chargers, enabling them to take electricity from the grid and release it back when the vehicle is not in use.
It says that, as well as being commercially beneficial, V2G will alleviate pressure at times of peak usage on the local grid and prepare the existing charging infrastructure for an increase in the number of electric vehicles. This allows vehicles to charge at times of lower demand when energy is cheaper and release it back at times of higher demand when it is more expensive.
“Plymouth is a particularly strained part of the grid, with Cornwall generating a lot of renewable energy but delivering this further up the country at times of high demand”, said Dan Turner, Low Carbon City Officer, Plymouth City Council. “For businesses to grow, we need to find new ways to support their energy consumption whilst reducing connection costs across the city, so the V2G concept appeals to us from a grid management perspective as well as a commercial one.”