Monday, March 16, 2009

Edison Investing in Electric Cars

SoCalEd is spending more than $5 million a year on its electric car program which includes a fleet of 300 PHEV's and research into battery technology.

That electric cars a home run for utilities is well known-- they suck lots of power and they typically do so at night when excess capacity is greatest. But the real keys to the kingdom lies in advancing battery technology.

One of the most vexing problems historically for utilities is how to store power for later use. It's one of the biggest drawbacks of wind and solar power (after you get past the siting and transmission issue). If SoCalEd can literally build a better mousetrap in terms of battery storage, the technology has huge implications for the business as a whole.

USA Today has the larger story: