DRIVERS who charge their electric cars at home during peak times should pay more for the privilege, an electricity boss has said.
Frank Mitchell, chief executive of SP Energy Networks, also warned that this additional cost should be used to upgrade local power networks to ensure they can cope.
Speaking to the Financial Times, he added that although they should pay an extra charge, EV drivers should not be restricted from charging at home.
Mr Mitchell also stated that drivers who are prepared to install chargers that work only when the local network is able to cope should be spared such costs.
This comes after suggestions by think-tanks, such as Green Alliance, that charging just six electric vehicles on the same street during peak times could cause an outage. This, it added, could mean costly upgrades for the local grid infrastructure.
Speaking of vehicle charging, Mitchell told the financial magazine: “I do think there is a difference between somebody who wants to have a fully controllable high speed [electric vehicle] charging unit at their discretion to do with what they want, versus somebody who is happy to have one that is a managed service that allows us to balance the costs to society.”
He also cautioned that unless power companies were prepared for the transition, they could inadvertently end up holding up progress.
One project in London has even estimated the costs of reinforcing power networks to cope with additional demand from EVs at between £6bn and £16bn by 2050.