Delmarva Power is preparing for a future in which more electric cars are driven in Delaware.
Delmarva Power has gotten approval from the Delaware Public Service Commission to pursue installing four public electric vehicle charging stations across the state— and offer a new rate option for those with electric vehicles charging at home.
Those who install a second meter for their electric vehicle could be charged a reduced “off-peak” rate during the night and a higher “peak” rate during the afternoon and evening. Officials say this would incentivize charging during non-peak hours.
Officials say the program will be rolled out over the next year. It is expected to cost around $475,000— which will show up as a delivery charge of around 3.7 cents a month for the average residential customer.
Delmarva spokesman Jake Sneeden says the move is in response to a growing demand for electric vehicles across the country.
“We’re seeing that here in Delaware as well. I believe between 2015 and 2016 we had one of the highest growth rates of electric vehicles of any state,” he said. “As the local energy provider here in Delaware … it’s our responsibility to make sure we’re looking ahead and seeing what trends are occurring that may impact our system and we need to prepare for.”
Sneeden says the program is a first step. “What this program does is it really makes sure that we are studying the impact electric vehicles will have on the grid and we’re prepared to manage the grid in a way that we can allow more EVs to come onto our grid.”
“We are glad to see Delaware taking steps to prepare for the coming demand for EVs, which will better position the state to meet its environmental goals and reap the many benefits of electric transportation, including the potential reduction in local air pollution,” said Joseph Otis Minott, executive director and chief counsel for Clean Air Council, in a statement.
The locations of the charging stations will be determined by Delmarva, Delaware Public Service Commission staff, the Division of the Public Advocate and DelDOT.
A working group comprised of Delmarva and other stakeholders will analyze data from the program to look at how infrastructure should expand in the future.