California energy authorities warned of possible partial outages of the state's power grid, presenting - throughout the month - possible limitations in energy capacity in the summer months.
Officials said California could face a shortfall of 17,000 Mb this summer, affecting the power supply of 1 to 4 million people. This amount could be affected by an additional deficit of 5,000 Mb in the event of extreme heat and fire damage to the state's power lines.
California has committed to phasing out gasoline-powered vehicles by 2035, a goal that is closer to what the federal government has, electric vehicle (EV) charging could represent much more expense on the electric grid.
"Let's say we had a substantial number of (electric) vehicles charging at home like everyone dreams of," Ram Rajagopal, associate professor of civil and environmental engineering at Stanford University, author of a recent study analyzing the strain on electric vehicle adoption. Expected to be placed on the electric grid, he told Yahoo Finance in an interview. "Today's grid may not be able to support it. It comes down to: is it charging during the time the solar power is on?"
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Toward net-zero emissions
The most populous U.S. state, California, reported on the complex move utilities face in dealing with high-temperature management of energy supply as the U.S. moves away from fossil fuel products to get to lower emissions.
With information from the U.S. Energy Information Administration, California is considered a leading region in ecological transition, with 30% of renewable energies generated in the state, with the objective of eliminating carbon sources from the electric grid by 2045, replacing this type of energy with solar, geothermal and biomass. It will then become a focus of green energy in the U.S. country.
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As California is a benchmark for other states, it is exposing itself to complex scenarios such as transportation, where the development of the electric vehicle industry is already underway. "I really think we have to balance our need for reliability and our desire for a clean grid," Rajagopal said.V
The number of electric vehicles is expected to increase from 7 million to 400 million by 2040 globally. The transition to zero-emission cars is estimated to add 2,000 TWh to annual energy demand by 2050, which - according to a study by global advisory group ICF - represents a 40% increase.
A Boston Consulting Group study estimated that utilities with two to three million customers will need to invest in EV grid upgrades of between $1,700 and $5,800 through 2030 in order to reliably meet the increase in energy demand.
For more information, see the Yahoo Finance article.
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