Pennsylvania Public Utility Commission to explore rate design solutions for electric vehicles

Last week, the Pennsylvania Public Utility Commission (PUC) voted unanimously to approve ChargEVC-PAs petition on Electric Utility Rate Design for Electric Vehicle (EV) Charging.

EV adoption is expected to drastically increase in Pennsylvania in the coming years. This shift is highlighted by the substantial commitments that major auto manufacturers have made to EV production and sales, and investments made at the federal level to build publicly accessible charging stations.

Widespread EV adoption presents the most significant load-growth challenge for electric utilities in decades. ChargEVC-PA, a diverse coalition that works to advance transportation electrification in Pennsylvania, understands this challenge and filed its petition to urge the PUC to begin an important discussion. If addressed through appropriate rate design, this growth in EVs could bring lower rates to all Pennsylvania utility customers as well as keep strain on the grid at bay, by urging customers to plug in their vehicles during off-peak hours.

We applaud the PUC for moving forward to address the critical questions around rate design and transportation electrification, said Brendon Baatz, Vice President of Gabel Associates who filed the petition on behalf of ChargEVC-PA. It will be critical to optimize the electric system with price signals as EV adoption increases. Were excited to roll up our sleeves and get started.

Broadly, EV adoption has the potential to provide savings for EV owners and for public transit with respect to fueling and maintenance costs. Moreover, EV adoption will bring significant economic development to the Commonwealth a sizable transportation market and provide climate and health benefits to all its citizens.

This past week, the PUC unanimously approved ChargEVC-PAs petition at its public meeting. Over the next 30 days, the PUC will convene an EV charging rate design working group. By spring of 2023, the working group will develop recommendations for the PUC to consider a policy statement to be adopted by the Commission by June 1, 2023.