The Electric Vehicle Research Pilot will analyze electric vehicle charging trends to help prepare Northeast Florida’s electricity infrastructure for the new expected load from EVs.
JACKSONVILLE [Oct. 2023] – Optiwatt, a San Francisco-based home energy analytics platform, announced a partnership with local utility JEA and the national Electric Power Research Institute (EPRI) to help the utility plan for expected increases in energy demand as more electric vehicles (EVs) hit the road in the Southeast.
Together, Optiwatt, JEA and EPRI invite EV owners in the JEA service area to participate in an Electric Vehicle Research Pilot, a program that will monitor EV charging and its effect on overall electric demand. EV owners who participate are entitled to receive a $7 monthly incentive for the 12-month duration of the program.
“More and more Florida drivers are going electric, and JEA is working strategically to ensure we are prepared for the increased demand on our power system,” JEA Managing Director & CEO Jay Stowe said. “We are grateful for the partnership with Optiwatt and EPRI to better understand the growing needs of EV drivers in Northeast Florida.”
The rate of EV adoption is expected to increase as the federal government and vehicle manufacturers target net-zero emissions in passenger vehicles before 2050, and the Environmental Protection Agency considers legislation requiring 67% of new passenger vehicles to be electric by 2032. With that in mind, electric utilities expect an increase in demand on the electric grid. This research pilot will help EPRI and JEA understand EV charging habits and evaluate potential impacts from EVs on the grid in Northeast Florida.
The pilot program supports most battery-only EVs on the road today; plug-in hybrids are excluded. Upon enrollment, vehicles will be assigned to a research group to measure the impact of EV charging on grid load optimization. Program organizers began recruitment of EV drivers in September, and will continue until 400 participants are enrolled.
There are less than 300 remaining spots available in the pilot program. Prospective enrollees may not be participants in JEA’s Bring Your Own Charger Program to be eligible. To enroll, participants must download to their EV the free Optiwatt app on the App Store or Google Play, or on Optiwatt.com. To view frequently asked questions on the partnership and enrollment details, please visit https://optiwatt.com/faq/jea.
About Optiwatt – Headquartered in San Francisco, California, Optiwatt is the largest telematics-based home energy analytics platform in North America. The company’s partnerships with national utility providers and production consumer-facing applications reduce cost and energy usage for home and auto owners. Optiwatt’s technology has attracted investors such as Alphabet’s GV wing, Urban Innovation Fund, Active Impact Investments and Thin Line Capital. For more information, please visit optiwatt.com.
JEA is a not-for-profit, community-owned utility that provides safe, reliable and affordable services to more than one million residents across four Northeast Florida counties. JEA is not owned by investors. It was created by the City of Jacksonville to meet the electricity and water needs of those who live in Jacksonville and surrounding communities. JEA’s 2,000+ workforce is dedicated to ensuring the demands of its customers are met, both today and for generations to come, while protecting our precious natural resources and supporting our region’s growth and economic development.