SCE Signs On to Effort to Advance ‘Bidirectional’ EV Charging
One day in the not-too-distant future, electric vehicle batteries could be used for much more than just powering cars. And an agreement that Southern California Edison signed with federal, state and local organizations this week may make this happen sooner than expected.
The memorandum of understanding establishes the Vehicle-To-Everything Collaboration, an alliance of public agencies and private enterprises to accelerate the development of “bidirectional” technology that allows EV batteries to discharge power for other uses when they are plugged in and not charging.
“SCE is proud to partner with the Department of Energy and others in this groundbreaking effort to unlock the tremendous potential of EV batteries to help power our homes and businesses and to serve as an important additional resource for the grid,” said Pedro J. Pizarro, president and CEO of Edison International, the parent company of SCE.
“As the growth of EVs in the U.S. continues to accelerate, we look forward to exploring together bidirectional EV charging solutions that bring the most value to our customers and are safe, easy to use, reliable and secure,” Pizarro added.
Experts from the various organizations will work together to investigate and promote the commercial viability of such technologies. Participants include automakers, charging equipment providers, industry associations, labor unions, utilities, national labs, public agencies and others.
“The MOU signed today represents a collaborative approach to researching and developing novel technologies that will help unify the clean energy and transportation sectors while getting more American consumers into EVs,” said U.S. Deputy Secretary of Energy Dave Turk. “Integrating charging technology that powers vehicles and simultaneously pushes energy back into the electrical grid is a win-win for the future of clean transportation and our energy resilience overall.”
Members of the collaboration also include the cities of Los Angeles and Lancaster, the Los Angeles Department of Water and Power, Pacific Gas and Electric Company, San Diego Gas & Electric Company, the Sacramento Municipal Utility District, the California Public Utilities Commission, the California Energy Commission and the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers Local 11. The group announced the agreement at the IBEW/National Electrical Contractors Association Net Zero Plus Electric Training Institute today in the city of Commerce.
SCE is proud to partner with the Departent of Energy and others in this groundbreaking effort to unlock the tremendous potential of EV batteries to help power our homes and businesses and to serve as an important additional resource for the grid."Pedro Pizarro, Edison International President & CEO
“This groundbreaking agreement couldn’t come at a better time as the EV market is taking off and the grid is moving toward 100% clean electricity in California and beyond,” said California Energy Commission Commissioner Patty Monahan.
SCE is currently testing vehicle-to-grid capabilities through the CEC’s Electric Program Investment Charge Program and is awaiting funding approval for several vehicle-grid integration pilots from the Public Utilities Commission. The electric company has also worked with standards bodies and automakers on critical standards updates to interconnect vehicle-to-grid systems using safe and compliant interconnection practices. It is also collaborating with auto manufacturers, hardware providers and regulators on vehicle-grid integration at both the policy and technical levels.