EV charging companies must collaborate to avoid walled gardens

Click on the image to download the report

Electric vehicle charging companies must develop common systems to avoid EV drivers having to juggle multiple apps and to enable electric vehicles to help rather than hinder the UK power system.

A new report by the Renewable Energy Association calls for government and industry to work towards a common standard so that everybody benefits – with government support rather than direct intervention.

The UK charging network is made up of a patchwork of systems. A lack of interoperability and commonality will damage consumer experience as EV penetration increases, and lead to sub-optimal outcomes for the UK energy system, says the REA.

Its report outlines the component pieces of the existing infrastructure, what a common approach might look like, current market barriers to interoperability and roaming, and potential pathways to standardisation.

The REA offers views on aspects such as mandating contactless payment across all charge points, provides case studies, summarises the views of market participants such as charge point operators, and details approaches in other countries.

It says a move towards a common roaming protocol, or to adopt ISO15118 as a standard (which governs vehicle to grid comms interfaces for bi-directional charging) is “eminently do-able”, but will require independent organisations to co-ordinate market actors.

The REA puts its subsidiary, Renewable Energy Assurance Limited, forward for this role.

See the report here.

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