How Well Will California’s Grid Hold Up With All The New EVs?

Well, on one hand, there won’t be as many as the powers that be think, because people won’t be able to afford them. Also, now we’re finding that they will only be able to charge at certain times

California’s electrical grid has an EV problem

Electric vehicleCalifornia energy officials issued a sobering warning this month, telling residents to brace for potential blackouts as the state’s energy grid faces capacity constraints heading into the summer months.

And since the state has committed to phase out all new gas-powered vehicles by 2035 — well ahead of federal targets — the additional load from electric vehicle (EV) charging could add more strain to the electric grid.

“Let’s say we were to have a substantial number of [electric] vehicles charging at home as everybody dreams,” Ram Rajagopal, an associate professor of Civil and Environmental Engineering at Stanford University, who authored a recent study looking at the strain electric vehicle adoption is expected to place on the power grid, told Yahoo Finance. “Today’s grid may not be able to support it. It all boils down to: Are you charging during the time solar power is on?”

So, you won’t be able to charge up overnight, which would be the most popular time to charge them? Super!

Rajagopal’s team of researchers at Stanford developed a model framework to help utility companies around the world calculate charging patterns to better manage electricity demand. In California, it found that peak charging demand would more than double by 2030 if EV owners opted to charge in the evening at home.

“The use of an electric vehicle is like adding one or two air conditioners to your residence in terms of its energy increase,” Mike Jacobs, Senior Energy Analyst at Union of Concerned Scientists, told Yahoo Finance. “So when the local utility engineer looks at this, he thinks of that air conditioning in the afternoon and the electric vehicle coming home at the same time.”

Jacobs said the transition will mark a dramatic adjustment in behavior. Utility companies and service operators, who have long grown accustomed to “a predictable shape” and schedule in energy usage, will be forced to more actively manage the grid to avoid surges. Likewise, drivers will be forced to adapt to new charging times, with some being asked to plug in at work during the day, while others commit to set hours at night to ensure even distribution of energy capacity.

This sounding funner and funner

A study from Boston Consulting Group estimated utility companies with two to three million customers will need to invest between $1,700 and $5,800 in grid upgrades per EV through 2030 in order to reliably meet the surge in energy demand.

Guess who will pay for that?

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9 Responses to “How Well Will California’s Grid Hold Up With All The New EVs?”

  1. Hairy says:

    Ford Lightning now back ordered to 2025
    Tesla Cyber Truck back ordered to 2027
    Americans are willing to wait years for production to catch up to pre orders …….. because “nobody wants them”
    Global gasoline prices are skyrocketing Americans are going to pay the current world market price. 1000 million gallons of refined gas diesel JP5 are exported from the USA every day.
    Cali hits 100% energy needs from renewables
    May 2 2022
    Later revised to 99.87%
    I am expecting that 1 day 100% energy from renewables will be happening more often
    Last year renewable energy globally was 10%
    That share should increase by at least 1% per year

  2. Dana says:

    Our esteemed host wrote:

    “Today’s grid may not be able to support it. It all boils down to: Are you charging during the time solar power is on?”

    So, you won’t be able to charge up overnight, which would be the most popular time to charge them? Super!

    What a boon that will be for commercial charging stations, as people have to recharge on their way to, or from, work! Of course, sitting in four-hour-long lines just to get your turn at the charging station, which will take 75 minutes to recharge your Chevy Dolt, might be a bit of an inconvenience, but hey, you’ve got to make that sacrifice to avert global warming climate change!

  3. bob sykes says:

    Go over to Manhattan Contrarian:

    He has a long lists of posts regarding the costs of electrification of the economy. The killer is the batteries.

  4. UnkleC says:

    Thanks for the heads-up, Bob. Interesting site.
    There is always the Nikola Charging Trailer, either mains or diesel, its designed to charge the Nikola class 8 trucks where suitable chargers are not available or are being installed.
    The issue is just simple math, a level 2 charger need around 50 amps at 240 volts [ Chargepoint CPH50-NEMA14-50-L23 ], that’s only about 12,000 watts. Now just multiply by the number of homes on your section of grid and you have the additional sparktricity needed. An example, my 2000 home neighborhood only needs an additional 24 MegaWatts to put a level 2 charger in each home. More windmills, solar farms, and battery storage. No problem, it’s only money. Of course, these generating facilities have a shorter working lifespan than more conventional generation, so replacement, rebuilding, and heavy maintenance will be coming due in short order.

  5. Mr. Proton says:

    Don’t forget, California has a secret weapon up its sleeve: migration.

    As they continue to drive more and more people to Texas and other such places, the load on their grid goes down 🙂

    • Ultra MAGA says:

      California will successfully participate in their Replacement Program by shipping illegals to other states. It accomplishes their primary goal of stealing elections not by stuffing the ballot box but rather stuffing the population with non Americans. It helps their secondary goal by replacing whites with all kinds of colored people and their third goal of overwhelming Christians by infiltrating Muslims in urban centers.

      If you think all this is white supremacy propaganda go back and read what democrats have been saying since the 1990’s. That’s why they are always accusing us White Christians of racism and wanting white nationalism. You never hear a normal white conservative say that only leftists.

      See, the Democrat problem is, they’re hell-bent on replacing white America with a new, illegal-alien population that has no conservative American values. But they don’t want people to NOTICE what they’re doing. They don’t want anyone to call them out on it, or to object.
      They want to replace the population by stealth, attacking and berating everybody who dares to point out what they’re doing, until it’s too late for white normal citizens to react.

      I’ve come to the conclusion that the racial component of the replacement theory is secondary. The Dems just want to replace ANYONE who won’t vote their way. The fact that many of them are white is coincidental.

      Are whites the only victims of replacement?
      No. The Great Replacement affects whites more than any other group, but demographic change can dispossess other groups. In the United States, blacks have been pushed out of many cities and replaced by Hispanics. Here are figures for Los Angeles:

      Year Percent Black Percent Hispanic
      1990 11.20 37.81
      2000 9.78 44.56
      2010 8.73 47.74
      2020 7.93 47.98

      From 2000 to 2010, Chicago’s black population decreased by 17 percent in the face of gains by Asians and Hispanics.

      You can easily find all sorts of clips of democrats crowing about how demographics are on their side, that soon European white people will soon be a minority in the US. Including junta joe himself (2017), stating that this was a ‘good thing’. How is this ‘replacement theory’ a big bad invention of white supremacist right-wing extremists?

      Yeah, we’re all racists and we’re all white supremacists. And it’s all propaganda except the numbers are real.


  6. UnkleC says:

    Just a passing comment, EV equities are dropping lately. Tesla, Rivian, Nikola, and even Ford are down in a down market. Those are just the stocks I follow,
    Maybe, some folks are taking note of issues such as the grid?

  7. alanstorm says:

    the additional load from electric vehicle (EV) charging could add more strain to the electric grid.

    …As anyone not an idiot could have predicted.

  8. captainfish says:

    How Well Will California’s Grid Hold Up With All The New EVs?


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