Report Shows EVs Are Saving Americans Billions on Utility Bills

A recent report by Synapse Energy Economics has revealed that U.S. battery electric vehicle (BEV) drivers are saving the country billions of dollars on utility bills. The research analyzed how much BEV drivers in the United States were paying for electricity in comparison with the costs associated with producing electricity such as transmission and distribution costs.

Synapse found that in the decade from 2011 to 2021, U.S. EV drivers contributed a whopping $3.12 billion on top of the EV-charging associated costs. The result, Synapse says, was a drop in monthly electricity rates for all customers across the country. Even after Synapse accounted for the utility costs spent on electric vehicle programs in the U.S., it found that electric vehicles contributed to a net gain of $2.44 billion.

The research indicates that electric vehicles aren’t only beneficial to their owners in terms of reducing utility costs; the entire nation is already benefiting from the nascent battery electric vehicle sector through reduced utility costs. The research was commissioned by the Natural Resources Defense Council (NRDC), a New York environmental advocacy group.

Unfortunately, the U.S.’s EV sector is still in its infancy, and the majority of electric vehicle drivers are located in the western U.S., primarily in California. Most of the revenue generated from electric vehicle charging came from the West Coast due to California’s widespread adoption of electric vehicle technology. The U.S. Energy Information Administration reports that by 2022, 37% of the nation’s electric cars (1.1 million units) were registered in California, giving the western region a significant lead over the rest of the country.

California is also home to the vast majority of the country’s public electric vehicle charging infrastructure. Utility customers in some areas such as California typically pay time-of-use rates which charge them differently based on the time of day. The charges are designed to encourage EV charging when total electricity demand is low by charging electric vehicle owners more to charge their cars during peak demand hours. In Alameda, California, for instance, EV drivers pay more to charge between the peak demand hours of 5 p.m. to 9 p.m. on weekdays.

According to a 2019 report also sponsored by the Natural Resources Defense Council, charging EVs during off-peak hours could make it much easier for the national grid to accommodate electric vehicle charging without significant upgrades to most of the distribution system. Another joint report from the NRDC and the Electric Power Research Institute found that annual consumer costs could go down by more than $200 billion by 2050, thanks to EV efficiency improvements as long as EV costs don’t deviate significantly.

As more people embrace various electric vehicles from manufacturers such as VinFast Auto Ltd. (NASDAQ: VFS), the benefits explored by this report could multiply several times over.

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