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Open Access Publications from the University of California

Using the Plug-in Electric Vehicle (PEV) Planning Toolbox to Understand Market Growth in California

  • Author(s): Davis, Adam W;
  • Tal, Gil
  • et al.

Accurately predicting the spatial distribution and charging demand of future electric vehicles is vital to directing investment in charging infrastructure and planning policy interventions. To date, this expansion has been heavily concentrated in wealthy cities and suburbs, among commuters, and among households able to charge their vehicles at home. The expansion of EV ownership will include both changes in where the vehicles are owned as well as how they are used and charged. This paper demonstrates methods to predict where the expansion of electric vehicle ownership is likeliest to occur under current market characteristics and allow for testing of scenarios of future characteristics. These methods are demonstrated with an analysis of California, using a scenario of 4 million battery electric vehicles and 1 million plug-in hybrid electric vehicles, to match the state’s goal of 5 million zero-emission vehicles by 2030. These projections are combined with a model for charging behavior to generate scenarios of demand for charging away from home under various fleet characteristics and identify areas of the state with the greatest need for infrastructure investment.

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