Energy Exchange

Flexible interconnection can optimize the grid and speed deployment of charging infrastructure

Electric truck with charging station

By Casey Horan

As the first blog in this series details, shorter interconnection timelines can be key to accelerating electric vehicle deployments and achieving decarbonization goals.  Luckily, there are currently available policy and technical solutions states can use to achieve timely interconnection, including: (1) hybrid interconnection; (2) flexible interconnection; and (3) ramped connection.  

The process of upgrading the grid can be lengthy, expensive and complex. For utilities, flexible interconnection can help bring down costs by optimizing existing grid infrastructure and deferring costly grid upgrades. Closing the gap between what the grid can accommodate and the scale of the energy resources that can be connected will benefit both utilities and customers. Here, we explore ways states can use flexible interconnection agreements to deploy EV chargers more quickly without putting excess stress on the grid.  

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Solutions for timely interconnection to speed the transition to electric trucks

By Casey Horan 

Transportation electrification is accelerating at an unprecedented rate, with nine states adopting the Advanced Clean Trucks rule, which requires manufacturers to produce increasing amounts of zero-emission medium- and heavy-duty vehicles. There are more pathways than ever for MHDV fleets to electrify, as state and federal programs like those within the Inflation Reduction Act are incentivizing the transition by way of grants, rebates and financing.  

To accommodate the vast amount of MHDEVs gearing up to electrify and help fleets get on the road faster, states can take advantage of a range of available solutions to address existing barriers. For example, one of the biggest challenges utilities face is timely interconnection, i.e., connection to the distribution grid, with fleets that require more capacity facing multi-year delays in some states. 

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Electric truck deployments by U.S. companies grew five times in 2023

Row of cargo electric trucks against with sunBy Marissa Nixon

U.S. companies are expanding their electric vehicle fleets, and last year was monumental. An astounding 10,265 electric trucks hit the road in 2023, according to a new EDF analysis of class 2b-8 fleet announcements.

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How a new carbon certificate registry could jump-start global production of sustainable aviation fuels

By Istvan Bart, Climate Director

Last week, Virgin Atlantic became the first commercial airline to fly across the Atlantic ocean using 100% sustainable aviation fuels , demonstrating the incredible potential of clean, alternative fuels for flight. We need more planes flying on SAF, because if aviation were a country, it would be one of the world’s top 10 sources of greenhouse gas pollution.

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Zeroing in on ports of high potential: Sustainable first mover initiatives are vital for identifying the most suitable locations for future fuel investment

By Dana G. Rodriguez and Dr. Charlie McKinlay

As global policies to advance the decarbonisation of shipping are to be implemented in the coming years, ports will play an important role in the transition, serving as key hubs for transport and energy systems. But ports are also home to large and diverse communities with their own unique local environmental impacts. While we strongly support first mover initiatives, such as green corridors and energy hubs, that are designed to play an important role in unlocking investments and scaling up fuels and technologies, we also want to ensure that the local socio-economic and environmental factors are more intentionally considered in the development of these hubs. If done right, inclusive and sustainable co-benefits for communities and the environment may be achieved, while also delivering emissions reductions globally.

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Why using ammonia in power generation is risky for the climate

Hirono thermal power plant in Hirono, Fukushima, Japan

By Sofia Esquivel-Elizondo and Ilissa Ocko

Companies are announcing plans to use ammonia to decarbonize the power sector, because they view it as a carbon-free fuel that does not emit carbon dioxide and other carbon-based air pollutants, such as carbon monoxide, when combusted.

But there are serious issues with this strategy, primarily because it doesn’t take ammonia production — which often requires fossil fuels — into account. Depending on how it is made, using ammonia for power generation can increase greenhouse gas emissions and be incompatible with temperature targets. And, even when production is clean, co-firing ammonia can be expensive, dangerous and worsen air quality.

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