Electric Nation was featured on the BBC Coventry and Warwickshire Breakfast Show with Trish Adudu on Monday 8 May (www.bbc.co.uk/bbccoventryandwarwickshire)
Jason Savidge from Stratford Energy, one of the project’s smart charger installers, was interviewed as part of the programme. Jason explained how free smart chargers are available for electric vehicle owners as part of the Electric Nation project. As numbers of electric vehicles continue to rise, and owners in a local area charge them simultaneously at peak times, there may be greater impact on some local electricity networks in Britain. The Electric Nation project is trialling a solution to this challenge through the use of smart chargers and demand management as a solution to allow the number of electric vehicles to continue growing in the UK.
Two other features in the programme looked at the wider subject of electric vehicles. Electric vehicle owners who were interviewed spoke enthusiastically about their cars, stressing the lower running costs and how they were perfectly suitable for their driving patterns. A local dealership selling electric cars reported a recent significant increase in sales.
One of the themes of the programme was that the Midlands is seen as an area that is at the forefront of electric vehicle research and development, but the charging infrastructure is lagging behind. A comment was made that the number of public charging points in the region hasn’t increased over recent years, but the number of electric cars has, so there is now more demand for charge points from EV owners. A particular need was identified for more public fast chargers.
The programme referred to ‘black-outs’ potentially being caused by the demand from increasing numbers of electric vehicles. However energy experts say that the UK has sufficient power to charge EVs, the challenge is at a local level, specifically with substations, and the cables between substations and people’s homes, which, in many cases, were installed many years ago, when it wasn’t possible to predict the growth of electric vehicles. However Western Power Distribution is addressing this challenge before it becomes a problem through the Electric Nation project.
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