Understanding Household Electric Vehicle Charging Patterns to Improve Electricity Demand Estimates

Research Team: Catherine Wolfram (lead) and Andy Campbell, UC Berkeley; James Bushnell and David Rapson, UC Davis

University: UC Berkeley, UC Davis

Problem Statement: Meeting California’s ambitious electric vehicle (EV) adoption goals will require integration with the electric sector, given that access to reliable and affordable electricity is a key factor in the appeal of EVs. Understanding the patterns of EV adoption and usage across regions and demographic groups will help improve the state’s planning efforts.

Project Description: This research project will combine electricity meter data with household- level vehicle registration data over the past four years to evaluate the impact of EV adoption on the level and profile of residential electricity consumption. Residential charging load is the least understood component of EV electricity usage because most households with EVs do not have separate meters measuring EV electricity use. This project will expand on a previous research project funded by the UC ITS with data from more utilities, more years, and, importantly, household-level vehicle data. By measuring differences in charging loads between EV owners and non-owners by customer characteristics, more accurate future projections of electricity demand can be made based on not just how many EVs are likely to be purchased, but also by whom, when, and where.

Status: In Progress

Budget: $78,016

Project Partner(s): California Public Utilities Comission