Buy an EV, Power Your Neighbor's Fridge!

David Cavena17 Aug, 2023 2 Min Read
Canada hits the accelerator.

As we've often discussed before at The Pipeline, one of the big issues with the Left's planned "Green Transition" is the lack of sufficient battery capacity. Battery technology isn't anywhere near where it would need to be to counter the problem of wind-and-solar intermittency, and building up hundreds of thousands, or millions, of batteries to do that work now isn't really feasible. Unless, say some all-in Leftists, maybe it is:

PG&E's CEO Patricia Poppe has come up with an "unconventional" idea, using electric cars to send excess power back to the grid to prevent blackouts.

Unconventional is right! The idea being proposed by California’s largest electric utility, is that people have spent multiple hours storing all that nice sunshine and wind in their battery-powered cars, and now it is just sitting there, ripe for the taking. Why not -- only it times of potential grid instability, mind you! --  allow energy companies suck it back onto the grid, to help power their neighbor’s electric furnace, electric stove, the kid-down-the-block's video game console, and to charge the E.V. battery of the guy across town. All from the “excess” power, of course.

Look at that excess capacity!

Some E.V.s, including Ford's F-150 Lightning, already have the capacity for what they call "bi-directional charging," which they tout as a way to draw energy from your car's battery to your home's generator, during the time's of extended blackout. PG&E's proposal is to make that feature standard on all E.V.s, and to use those batteries as back-up for the whole (unreliable, wind-and-solar powered) grid.

The idea is something like a hydro-electric dam. Except, well, the government usually pays to build and maintain those, whereas they expect you to start paying for your Tesla (at least once the gas-and-diesel industry is dead, and they can stop subsidizing E.V.s).

One wonders: is this what consumers really want? You charge your battery all weekend only to run out of juice on the way to work Monday morning because the State of California decided that that was "excess energy" which would be better employed powering someone else's appliances? Sounds extremely doubtful. Some more questions:

  • Will the owners of these battery-powered cars get to charge-back the cost of the electricity they are supplying?
  • Will consumers, as do utilities, get a government-guaranteed profit margin for the electricity they supply?
  • And what happens when the bi-directional charging system glitches and the lithium battery burns down your house? (We already know that they have fire issues.)

The answer to all of these is, well, we're not sure. But I’ll bet that they'll come up with something that will keep everyone happy real soon! That’s what government does, right? Meanwhile, you can rest easy in the knowledge that that E.V. charging in your garage is a $90,000 investment in a "Green" utopia, which, it must be admitted, is the only reason the electricity grid needs bailing out in the first place.

These people would be hilarious if they weren’t such a threat to civilization itself.

David Cavena is a native southern Californian exfiltrated to Arizona. An IT professional for 40 years, he has pushed cows in California, dudes and horses in Wyoming, and programmers in Los Angeles and Phoenix. An avid outdoorsman – skier, backpacker, water skier and scuba diver – David writes from Arizona.


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One comment on “Buy an EV, Power Your Neighbor's Fridge!”

  1. People are under the impression that there is excess electricity out there. AC power is made to exactly fill needs by the second, the cycle rate (60hz) is used to make exactly the correct amount of power at the correct frequency. AC power does not store well, and DC power doesn't travel. well. Our grids are engineering masterpieces and rely on dispatchable power sources, which wind and solar are not. Coal is an ideal form of stored solar energy, a natural battery.

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