Illinois-based non-profit organisation Citizens Utility Board has pubished the results of a study conducted to understand consumer benefits owing to sustainable and intelligent charging of electric vehicles (EVs).
The study is claimed to be the first in the state to be conducted by a consumer watchdog to analyse the impact which EVs have on consumers
According to the study 'Charging Ahead: Deriving Value from Electric Vehicles for All Electricity Customers', intelligent charging of EVs could result in up to $2.6 billion in consumer benefits over the next decade.
This is equivalent to a decrease in energy tariffs by 12% over the next decade.
The $2.6 billion in savings could only be achieved if policy-makers encourage the adoption of time of use tariffs and consumers to charge during times when energy demand on the main grid is low.
Amongst the anticipated $2.6 billion in consumer savings, up to $2 billion will be accrued in lower costs for energy consumption, $124 million in lower costs for investments in "capacity." and $536 million in additional utility revenue.
On the other side, if regulators ignore adopting policies on smart EV charging, EV proliferation could increase Illinois power bills by up to $856 million.
David Kolata, Executive director at Citizens Utility Board, said: "While the EV revolution is still in its infancy, we're already approaching a crucial crossroads in how to manage the ripple effects on our electricity costs.
"This research shows that escalating EV sales could lead to lower utility bills for everyone. To ensure that we seize this opportunity for savings, the public can't afford for their policy makers to wait. Action is needed now to set policies that help EV owners charge their cars in a way that benefits everyone."
The release of the study findings comes at a time illinois has registered 15,000 EVs, with the number expected to increase to at least 690,000 by 2030 and to as high as 2.2 million if the state embarks on an aggressive effort to reduce carbon emissions.
"Electric vehicles produce many rewards for the public at large, including a reduction in pollution from autos and diminishing dependence on foreign oil.
"Our analysis shows that EVs not only allow drivers to charge a car at a much lower cost than to fill at the pump, but they also have the potential to keep a lid on electric bills for all consumers," reiterates Kolata.
For more information aboiut the study, visit CitizensUtilityBoard.org.